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Cost-of-Living Adjustments for Federal Civil Service Annuities

Description: Cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) for the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) and the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS) are based on the rate of inflation as measured by the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W). All CSRS retirees and survivors receive COLAs. Under FERS, however, non-disabled retirees under age 62 do not receive COLAs. This report discusses cost-of-living adjustments for government retirees, as well as related legislation.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Isaacs, Katelin P.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Register, Volume 75, Number 199, October 15, 2010, Pages 63379-63694

Description: Daily publication of the U.S. Office of the Federal Register contains rules and regulations, proposed legislation and rule changes, and other notices, including "Presidential proclamations and Executive Orders, Federal agency documents having general applicability and legal effect, documents required to be published by act of Congress, and other Federal agency documents of public interest" (p. ii). Table of Contents starts on page iii.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: United States. Office of the Federal Register.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

DWPF COAL-CARBON WASTE ACCEPTANCE CRITERIA LIMIT EVALUATION BASED ON EXPERIMENTAL WORK (TANK 48 IMPACT STUDY)

Description: This report summarizes the results of both experimental and modeling studies performed using Sludge Batch 10 (SB10) simulants and FBSR product from Tank 48 simulant testing in order to develop higher levels of coal-carbon that can be managed by DWPF. Once the Fluidized Bed Steam Reforming (FBSR) process starts up for treatment of Tank 48 legacy waste, the FBSR product stream will contribute higher levels of coal-carbon in the sludge batch for processing at DWPF. Coal-carbon is added into the FBSR process as a reductant and some of it will be present in the FBSR product as unreacted coal. The FBSR product will be slurried in water, transferred to Tank Farm and will be combined with sludge and washed to produce the sludge batch that DWPF will process. The FBSR product is high in both water soluble sodium carbonate and unreacted coal-carbon. Most of the sodium carbonate is removed during washing but all of the coal-carbon will remain and become part of the DWPF sludge batch. A paper study was performed earlier to assess the impact of FBSR coal-carbon on the DWPF Chemical Processing Cell (CPC) operation and melter off-gas flammability by combining it with SB10-SB13. The results of the paper study are documented in Ref. 7 and the key findings included that SB10 would be the most difficult batch to process with the FBSR coal present and up to 5,000 mg/kg of coal-carbon could be fed to the melter without exceeding the off-gas flammability safety basis limits. In the present study, a bench-scale demonstration of the DWPF CPC processing was performed using SB10 simulants spiked with varying amounts of coal, and the resulting seven CPC products were fed to the DWPF melter cold cap and off-gas dynamics models to determine the maximum coal that can be processed through the ...
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Lambert, D. & Choi, A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S. International Trade: Trends and Forecasts

Description: This report discusses the U.S. trade deficit in light of the 2008 global financial crisis, with emphasis on international trade and U.S. trade policy, most recent developments in trade of goods and service, trade forecasts for the future, and how issues such as the U.S. trade deficit and international trade, particularly with China, are commonly perceived.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Nanto, Dick K. & Donnelly, J. Michael
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Comparison of the Current World Trade Center Medical Monitoring and Treatment Program and the World Trade Center Health Program Proposed by Title I of H.R. 847

Description: This report compares the current federally supported medical screening and treatment program offered to various persons affected by the terrorist attack on New York City on September 11, 2001, with the federal program proposed to be established by Title I of H.R. 847, the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010, as amended and passed by the House of Representatives. The World Trade Center (WTC) Medical Monitoring and Treatment Program (MMTP) and the World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP) are the specific programs compared in this report.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Szymendera, Scott & Lister, Sarah A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Changes in the Arctic: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: The diminishment of Arctic sea ice has led to increased human activities in the Arctic, and has heightened concerns about the region's future. Issues such as Arctic sovereignty claims; commercial shipping through the Arctic; Arctic oil, gas, and mineral exploration; endangered Arctic species; and increased military operations in the Arctic could cause the region in coming years to become an arena of international cooperation, competition, or conflict. This report provides an overview of Arctic-related issues for Congress, and refers readers to more in-depth CRS reports on specific Arctic-related issues.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill: Coastal Wetland and Wildlife Impacts and Response

Description: The explosion of the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico on April 20, 2010, and the resulting oil spill began a cascade of effects on the coastal areas of the Gulf and on the wealth of species that inhabit those areas. This report addresses the importance of wetlands in general, the ecology of the coastal wetlands in the Gulf, impacts of oil spills on wetland habitats, response options, the implications of hurricane season for the spill's impacts, and cleanup and recovery issues. The emphasis is on the nearshore environment, although a few species found in deeper waters will be mentioned. In addition, some lessons from past spills such as the Exxon Valdez in Alaska will be discussed, along with issues that may arise as response and recovery transition to restoration of the Gulf.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Corn, M. Lynne & Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Recovery Act: FEMA Could Take Steps to Protect Sensitive Port Security Grant Details and Improve Recipient Reporting Instructions

Description: A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act) requires recipients to report, among other things, project descriptions on Recovery.gov, the federal Recovery Act Web site. Within the Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) Grant Programs Directorate administers the Port Security Grant Program (PSGP) to strengthen ports against risks from terrorist attacks. FEMA received and obligated $150 million in Recovery Act PSGP funds in 2009, and, as of September 2010, recipients have drawn down over $10 million. To facilitate recipient reporting, FEMA must consider the need both for transparency and for protection of Sensitive Security Information (SSI), which could be detrimental to transportation security if disclosed. As requested, GAO assessed FEMA's: (1) controls to ensure Recovery Act PSGP staff consistently follow SSI policies, and (2) steps to ensure PSGP recipients have not disclosed SSI on Recovery.gov. GAO reviewed relevant laws, regulations, guidance, and a random sample of PSGP Recovery Act recipient reports available as of February 2010, and interviewed agency officials."
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Afghanistan and Iraq: DOD Should Improve Adherence to Its Guidance on Open Pit Burning and Solid Waste Management

Description: A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "From the start of military operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, the U.S. military and its contractors have burned solid waste in open burn pits on or near military bases. According to the Department of Defense (DOD), burn pit emissions can potentially harm human health. U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) guidance directs the military's use of burn pits, and the Department of Veterans' Affairs (VA) provides healthcare and other benefits to veterans and their families. GAO was asked to report on the (1) extent of open pit burning in Afghanistan and Iraq, and whether the military has followed its guidance; (2) alternatives to burn pits, and whether the military has examined them; and (3) extent of efforts to monitor air quality and potential health impacts. GAO visited four burn pits in Iraq, reviewed DOD data on burn pits, and consulted DOD and VA officials and other experts. GAO was unable to visit burn pits in Afghanistan."
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Recovery Act: Department of Justice Could Better Assess Justice Assistance Grant Program Impact

Description: A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act), the U.S. Department of Justice's (DOJ) Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) awarded nearly $2 billion in 4-year Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) funds to state and local governments for criminal justice activities. As requested, GAO examined: (1) how Recovery Act JAG funds are awarded and how recipients in selected states and localities used their awards; (2) challenges, if any, selected recipients reported in complying with Recovery Act reporting requirements; (3) the extent to which states shared promising practices related to use and management of funds, and how, if at all, DOJ encouraged information sharing; and (4) the extent to which DOJ's JAG Recovery Act performance measures were consistent with promising practices. GAO analyzed recipient spending and performance data submitted as of June 30, 2010; interviewed officials in a nonprobability sample of 14 states and 62 localities selected based on the amount of their awards, planned activities, and their reported project status; assessed 19 JAG performance measures against a set of key attributes; and interviewed agency officials."
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Food Safety in the 111th Congress: H.R. 2749 and S. 510

Description: This report discusses whether the current food safety system has the resources, authority, and structural organization to safeguard the health of American consumers, who spend more than $1 trillion on food each year. Also at issue is whether federal food safety laws, first enacted in the early 1900s, have kept pace with the significant changes that have occurred in the food production, processing, and marketing sectors since then.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Johnson, Renée
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Small Business Administration HUBZone Program

Description: The Small Business Administration (SBA) administers several programs to support small businesses, including the Historically Underutilized Business Zone Empowerment Contracting (HUBZone) program. The HUBZone program is a small business federal contracting assistance program "whose primary objective is job creation and increasing capital investment in distressed communities." This report examines the arguments presented both for and against targeting assistance to geographic areas with specified characteristics, such as low income, high poverty, or high unemployment, as opposed to providing assistance to people or businesses with specified characteristics. It then assesses the arguments presented both for and against the creation and continuation of the HUBZone program.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Dilger, Robert Jay
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Oil Spill Legislation in the 111th Congress

Description: This report summarizes provisions of selected legislation - enacted and proposed - that address oil spill policy issues raised after the April 20, 2010, explosion and resulting oil spill at the Deepwater Horizon drilling platform in the Gulf of Mexico. This report focuses primarily on oil spill policy matters that concern prevention, preparedness, response, and the liability and compensation framework.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Ramseur, Jonathan L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

SciNOvA: A Measurement of Neutrino-Nucleus Scattering in a Narrow-Band Beam

Description: We propose to construct and deploy a fine-grained detector in the Fermilab NOvA 2 GeV narrow-band neutrino beam. In this beam, the detector can make unique contributions to the measurement of quasi-elastic scattering, neutral-current elastic scattering, neutral-current {pi}{sup 0} production, and enhance the NOvA measurements of electron neutrino appearance. To minimize cost and risks, the proposed detector is a copy of the SciBar detector originally built for the K2K long baseline experiment and used recently in the SciBooNE experiment.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Paley, J.; Djurcic, Z.; /Argonne; Harris, D.; Tesarek, R.; /Fermilab et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Final Report: Photo-Directed Molecular Assembly of Multifunctional Inorganic Materials

Description: This final report details results, conclusions, and opportunities for future effort derived from the study. The work involved combining the molecular engineering of photoactive Ti-alkoxide systems and the optical excitation of hydrolysis and condensation reactions to influence the development of the metal-oxygen-metal network at the onset of material formation. Selective excitation of the heteroleptic alkoxides, coupled with control of alkoxide local chemical environment, enabled network connectivity to be influenced and formed the basis for direct deposition and patterning of Ti-oxide-based materials. The research provided new insights into the intrinsic photoresponse and assembly of these complex, alkoxide molecules. Using a suite of electronic, vibrational, and nuclear spectroscopic probes, coupled with quantum chemical computation, the excitation wavelength and fluence dependence of molecular photoresponse and the nature of subsequent hydrolysis and condensation processes were probed in pyridine-carbinol-based Ti-alkoxides with varied counter ligand groups. Several methods for the patterning of oxide material formation were demonstrated, including the integration of this photoprocessing approach with conventional, dip-coating methodologies.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: B.G. Potter, Jr.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The"minimum information about an environmental sequence" (MIENS) specification

Description: We present the Genomic Standards Consortium's (GSC) 'Minimum Information about an ENvironmental Sequence' (MIENS) standard for describing marker genes. Adoption of MIENS will enhance our ability to analyze natural genetic diversity across the Tree of Life as it is currently being documented by massive DNA sequencing efforts from myriad ecosystems in our ever-changing biosphere.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Yilmaz, P.; Kottmann, R.; Field, D.; Knight, R.; Cole, J.R.; Amaral-Zettler, L. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Transport and deposition of functionalized CdTe nanoparticles in saturated porous media

Description: Comprehensive understanding of the transport and deposition of engineered nanoparticles (NPs) in subsurface is required to assess their potential negative impact on the environment. We studied the deposition behavior of functionalized quantum dot (QD) NPs (CdTe) in different types of sands (Accusand, ultrapure quartz, and iron-coated sand) at various solution ionic strengths (IS). The observed transport behavior in ultrapure quartz and iron-coated sand was consistent with conventional colloid deposition theories. However, our results from the Accusand column showed that deposition was minimal at the lowest IS (1 mM) and increased significantly as the IS increased. The effluent breakthrough occurred with a delay, followed by a rapid rise to the maximum normalized concentration of unity. Negligible deposition in the column packed with ultrapure quartz sand (100 mM) and Accusand (1 mM) rules out the effect of straining and suggests the importance of surface charge heterogeneity in QD deposition in Accusand at higher IS. Data analyses further show that only a small fraction of sand surface area contributed in QD deposition even at the highest IS (100 mM) tested. The observed delay in breakthrough curves of QDs was attributed to the fast diffusive mass transfer rate of QDs from bulk solution to the sand surface and QD mass transfer on the solid phase. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and energy-dispersive X-ray (EDX) analysis were used to examine the morphology and elemental composition of sand grains. It was observed that there were regions on the sand covered with layers of clay particles. EDX spectra collected from these regions revealed that Si and Al were the major elements suggesting that the clay particles were kaolinite. Additional batch experiments using gold NPs and SEM analysis were performed and it was observed that the gold NPs were only deposited on clay particles originally on the Accusand surface. ...
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Torkzaban, S.; Wan, J.; Kim, Y.; Mulvihill, M. & Tokunaga, T. K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

A truncated Levenberg-Marquardt algorithm for the calibration of highly parameterized nonlinear models

Description: We propose a modification to the Levenberg-Marquardt minimization algorithm for a more robust and more efficient calibration of highly parameterized, strongly nonlinear models of multiphase flow through porous media. The new method combines the advantages of truncated singular value decomposition with those of the classical Levenberg-Marquardt algorithm, thus enabling a more robust solution of underdetermined inverse problems with complex relations between the parameters to be estimated and the observable state variables used for calibration. The truncation limit separating the solution space from the calibration null space is re-evaluated during the iterative calibration process. In between these re-evaluations, fewer forward simulations are required, compared to the standard approach, to calculate the approximate sensitivity matrix. Truncated singular values are used to calculate the Levenberg-Marquardt parameter updates, ensuring that safe small steps along the steepest-descent direction are taken for highly correlated parameters of low sensitivity, whereas efficient quasi-Gauss-Newton steps are taken for independent parameters with high impact. The performance of the proposed scheme is demonstrated for a synthetic data set representing infiltration into a partially saturated, heterogeneous soil, where hydrogeological, petrophysical, and geostatistical parameters are estimated based on the joint inversion of hydrological and geophysical data.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Finsterle, S. & Kowalsky, M.B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Surface complexation of Pb(II) by hexagonal birnessite nanoparticles

Description: Natural hexagonal birnessite is a poorly-crystalline layer type Mn(IV) oxide precipitated by bacteria and fungi which has a particularly high adsorption affinity for Pb(II). X-ray spectroscopic studies have shown that Pb(II) forms strong inner-sphere surface complexes mainly at two sites on hexagonal birnessite nanoparticles: triple corner-sharing (TCS) complexes on Mn(IV) vacancies in the interlayers and double edge-sharing (DES) complexes on lateral edge surfaces. Although the TCS surface complex has been well characterized by spectroscopy, some important questions remain about the structure and stability of the complexes occurring on the edge surfaces. First-principles simulation techniques such as density functional theory (DFT) offer a useful way to address these questions by providing complementary information that is difficult to obtain by spectroscopy. Following this computational approach, we used spin-polarized DFT to perform total-energy-minimization geometry optimizations of several possible Pb(II) surface complexes on model birnessite nanoparticles similar to those that have been studied experimentally. We first validated our DFT calculations by geometry optimizations of (1) the Pb-Mn oxyhydroxide mineral, quenselite (PbMnO{sub 2}OH), and (2) the TCS surface complex, finding good agreement with experimental structural data while uncovering new information about bonding and stability. Our geometry optimizations of several protonated variants of the DES surface complex led us to conclude that the observed edge-surface species is very likely to be this complex if the singly-coordinated terminal O that binds to Pb(II) is protonated. Our geometry optimizations also revealed that an unhydrated double corner-sharing (DCS) species that has been proposed as an alternative to the DES complex is intrinsically unstable on nanoparticle edge surfaces, but could become stabilized if the local coordination environment is well-hydrated. A significant similarity exists in the structural parameters for the TCS complex and those for a DCS edge-surface complex that is protonated in the same manner as the optimal DES complex, ...
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Kwon, K.; Refson, K. & Sposito, G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Surface kinetic model for isotopic and trace element fractionation during precipitation of calcite from aqueous solution

Description: A surface reaction kinetic model is developed for predicting Ca isotope fractionation and metal/Ca ratios of calcite as a function of rate of precipitation from aqueous solution. The model is based on the requirements for dynamic equilibrium; i.e. proximity to equilibrium conditions is determined by the ratio of the net precipitation rate (R{sub p}) to the gross forward precipitation rate (R{sub f}), for conditions where ionic transport to the growing crystal surface is not rate-limiting. The value of R{sub p} has been experimentally measured under varying conditions, but the magnitude of R{sub f} is not generally known, and may depend on several factors. It is posited that, for systems with no trace constituents that alter the surface chemistry, R{sub f} can be estimated from the bulk far-from-equilibrium dissolution rate of calcite (R{sub b} or k{sub b}), since at equilibrium R{sub f} = R{sub b}, and R{sub p} = 0. Hence it can be inferred that R{sub f} {approx} R{sub p} + R{sub b}. The dissolution rate of pure calcite is measureable and is known to be a function of temperature and pH. At given temperature and pH, equilibrium precipitation is approached when R{sub p} (= R{sub f} - R{sub b}) << R{sub b}. For precipitation rates high enough that R{sub p} >> R{sub b}, both isotopic and trace element partitioning are controlled by the kinetics of ion attachment to the mineral surface, which tend to favor more rapid incorporation of the light isotopes of Ca and discriminate weakly between trace metals and Ca. With varying precipitation rate, a transition region between equilibrium and kinetic control occurs near R{sub p} {approx} R{sub b} for Ca isotopic fractionation. According to this model, Ca isotopic data can be used to estimate R{sub f} for calcite precipitation. Mechanistic models for calcite precipitation indicate that ...
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: DePaolo, D.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Written in Blood: the History of Fort Worth's Fallen Lawmen

Description: In 2009 Fort Worth unveiled an elaborate, million-dollar memorial to its fallen police and firefighters going all the way back to the city’s beginnings in 1873. Fifty-eight of the ninety-five names on the memorial were policemen. Written in Blood is a more inclusive version of that idea because it covers more than just members of the Fort Worth Police Department; it includes men from all branches of local law enforcement who died defending law and order in the early years: policemen, sheriffs, constables, “special officers,” and even a police commissioner. Richard F. Selcer and Kevin S. Foster tell the stories of thirteen of those early lawmen—an unlucky number to be sure. They range from Tarrant County Sheriff John B. York through Fort Worth Police Officer William “Ad” Campbell covering the years from 1861 to 1909. York was the first local lawman to die—in a street fight. Campbell was last in this era—shot-gunned in the back while walking his beat in Hell’s Half-Acre. Co-authors Selcer and Foster bring academic credentials and “street cred” to the story, explaining how policemen got (and kept) their jobs, what special officers were, and the working relationship between the city marshal’s boys and the sheriff’s boys.
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Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Selcer, Richard F.
Partner: UNT Press

Atmospheric Radiation Measurement Program Climate Research Facility Operations Quarterly Report July 1–September 30, 2010

Description: Individual raw datastreams from instrumentation at the Atmospheric Radiation Measurement (ARM) Climate Research Facility fixed and mobile sites are collected and sent to the Data Management Facility (DMF) at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) for processing in near real-time. Raw and processed data are then sent approximately daily to the ARM Archive, where they are made available to users. For each instrument, we calculate the ratio of the actual number of data records received daily at the Archive to the expected number of data records. The results are tabulated by (1) individual datastream, site, and month for the current year and (2) site and fiscal year (FY) dating back to 1998.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Sisterson, D. L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Role of Quench-back in the Passive Quench Protection of Uncoupled Solenoids in Series with and without Coil Sub-division

Description: This paper is the final paper in a series of papers that discusses passive quench protection for high inductance solenoid magnets. This report describes how passive quench protection system may be applied to superconducting magnets that are connected in series but not inductively coupled. Previous papers have discussed the role of magnet sub-division and quench back from a conductive mandrel in reducing the hot-spot temperature and the peak coil voltages to ground. When magnets are connected in series, quench-back from a conductive mandrel can cause other magnets in a string to quench even without inductive coupling between magnets. The magnet mandrels must be well coupled to the magnet circuit that is being quenched. When magnet circuit sub-division is employed to reduce the voltages-to-ground within magnets, the resistance across the subdivision becomes the most important factor in the successful quenching of the magnet string.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Guo, Xing Long; Green, Michael A; Wang, Li; Wu, Hong & Pan, Heng
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department