Search Results

Consensus Building in Sensor Networks and Long Term Planning for the National Airspace System

Description: In this thesis, I present my study on the impact of multi-group network structure on the performance of consensus building strategies, and the preliminary mathematical formulation of the problem on improving the performance of the National Airspace system (NAS) through long-term investment. The first part of the thesis is concerned with a structural approach to the consensus building problem in multi-group distributed sensor networks (DSNs) that can be represented by bipartite graph. Direct inference of the convergence behavior of consensus strategies from multi-group DSN structure is one of the contributions of this thesis. The insights gained from the analysis facilitate the design and development of DSNs that meet specific performance criteria. The other part of the thesis is concerned with long-term planning and development of the NAS at a network level, by formulating the planning problem as a resource allocation problem for a flow network. The network-level model viewpoint on NAS planning and development will give insight to the structure of future NAS and will allow evaluation of various paradigms for the planning problem.
Date: May 2011
Creator: Akula, Naga Venkata Swathik
Partner: UNT Libraries

The impact of climate and flooding on tree ring growth of Fraxinus pennsylvanica in north-central Texas.

Description: Tree cores of Fraxinus pennsylvanica were used in a dendrochronological analysis investigating the species' responses to climate and flooding. The objective was to develop a model that incorporates the effects of precipitation, temperature, and flooding on radial growth in this species in north-central Texas. The trees exhibited strong climatic signals. The study clearly shows that all three factors have significant impacts on tree ring growth both prior to and during growth; however, the nature and extent of these impacts are highly dependent on what time of year they occur. The large temporal variations in growth responses emphasize the importance of considering the timing of environmental events when studying tree growth responses.
Date: December 2009
Creator: Komperod, Mari
Partner: UNT Libraries

Integrating environmental data acquisition and low cost Wi-Fi data communication.

Description: This thesis describes environmental data collection and transmission from the field to a server using Wi-Fi. Also discussed are components, radio wave propagation, received power calculations, and throughput tests. Measured receive power resulted close to calculated and simulated values. Throughput tests resulted satisfactory. The thesis provides detailed systematic procedures for Wi-Fi radio link setup and techniques to optimize the quality of a radio link.
Date: December 2009
Creator: Gurung, Sanjaya
Partner: UNT Libraries

Quantification of Anthropogenic and Natural Sources of Fine Particles in Houston, Texas Using Positive Matrix Factorization

Description: Texas, due to its geographical area, population, and economy is home to a variety of industrialized areas that have significant air quality problems. These urban areas are affected by elevated levels of fine particulate matter (PM2.5). The primary objective of this study was to identify and quantify local and regional sources of air pollution affecting the city of Houston, Texas. Positive Matrix Factorization (PMF) techniques were applied to observational datasets from two urban air quality monitoring sites in Houston from 2003 through 2008 in order to apportion sources of pollutants affecting the study region. Data from 68 species for Aldine and 91 for Deer Park were collected, evaluated, and revised to create concentration and uncertainty input files for the PMF2 and EPA PMF (PMF3) source apportionment models. A 11-sources solution for Aldine and 10-sources for Deer Park were identified as the optimal solutions with both models. The dominant contributors of fine particulate matter in these sites were found to be biomass burnings (2%-8.9%), secondary sulfates I (21.3%-7.6%) and II (38.8%-22.2%), crustal dust (8.9%-10.9%), industrial activities (10.9%-4.2%), traffic (23.1%-15.6%), secondary nitrates (4.4%-5.5%), fresh (1%-1.6%) and aged(5.1%-4.6%) sea salt and refineries (1.3%-0.6%), representing a strong case to confirm the high influence of local activities from the industrial area and the ship channel around the Houston channel. Additionally, potential source contribution function (PSCF) and conditional probability function (CPF) analyses were performed to identify local and regional source-rich areas affecting this urban airshed during the study period. Similarly, seasonal variations and patterns of the apportioned sources were also studied in detail.
Date: August 2012
Creator: Peña Sanchez, Carlos Alberto
Partner: UNT Libraries

Implementation of Wireless Communications on Gnu Radio

Description: This thesis investigates the design and implementation of wireless communication system over the GNU Radio. Wireless applications are on the rise with advent of new devices, therefore there is a need to transfer the hardware complexity to software. This development enables software radio function with minimum hardware dependency. the purpose of this thesis is to design a system that will transmit compressed data via Software Defined Radio (SDR). Some parameters such as modulation scheme, bit rate can be changed to achieve the desired quality of service. in this thesis GNU (GNU’s not unix) radio is used while the hardware structure is Universal Software Radio Peripheral (USRP). in order to accomplish the goal, a compression technique called H264 (MPEG_4) encoding is applied for converting data into compressed format. the encoder was implemented in C++ to get compressed data. After encoding, the transmitter reads the compressed data and starts modulation. After modulation, the transmitter put the packets into USRP and sends it to the receiver. Once packets are received they are demodulated and then decoded to recover the original data.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Njoki, Simon M.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Analysis of Sources Affecting Ambient Particulate Matter in Brownsville, Texas

Description: Texas is the second largest state in U.S.A. based on geographical area, population and the economy. It is home to several large coastal urban areas with major industries and infrastructure supporting the fossil-fuel based energy sector. Most of the major cities on the state have been impacted by significant air pollution events over the past decade. Studies conducted in the southern coastal region of TX have identified long range transport as a major contributor of particulate matter (PM) pollution along with local emissions. Biomass burns, secondary sulfates and diesel emissions sources are comprise as the dominant mass of PM2.5 have been noted to be formed by the long range transport biomass from Central America. Thus, the primary objective of this study was to identify and quantify local as well as regional sources contributing to the PM pollution in the coastal area of Brownsville located along the Gulf of Mexico. Source apportionment techniques such as principal component analysis (PCA) and positive matrix factorization (PMF) were employed on the air quality monitoring data to identify and quantify local and regional sources affecting this coastal region. As a supplement to the PMF and PCA, conditional probability function (CPF) analysis and potential source contribution function (PSCF) analysis were employed to characterize the meteorological influences for PM events. PCA identified an optimal solution of 6 sources affecting the coastal area of Brownsville, while PMF resolved 8 sources for the same area. Biomass comingled with sea salt was identified to be the dominant contributor from the PCA analysis with 30.2% of the apportioned PM mass in Brownsville, meanwhile PMF account secondary sulfates I & II with 27.6%. the other common sources identified included, biomass burning, crustal dust, secondary sulfate, oil combustion, mobile sources and miscellaneous traffic sources.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Diaz Poueriet, Pablo
Partner: UNT Libraries

Integrating life cycle analysis and the ecological footprint calculator to foster sustainable behaviors

Description: Many tools have been developed to assess global, national or regional sustainable development policies. However, as governments develop sustainable policies, individuals must also feel empowered to affect their personal impact on the planet. This thesis integrates three sustainability concepts that lend themselves to individual sustainability: The natural step, life cycle assessment, and the ecological footprint. TNS serves to provide the meaning and substance toward sustainable development. LCA helps provide the framework for assessing sustainability. The EF calculator determines the driving components and measures the qualitative decisions made through TNS and LCA. From the analysis of the household footprint calculator a simplified footprint calculator was developed to assist individuals and communities in setting benchmarks and goals as they move away from over-consumption and towards a sustainable lifestyle.
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Date: December 2002
Creator: Anderle, Kathryn
Partner: UNT Libraries

Evaluation of the Chlorophyll/Fluorescence Sensor of the YSI Multiprobe: Comparison to an Acetone Extraction Procedure

Description: The purpose of this study was to examine the suitability of the YSI model 6600 Environmental Monitoring System (multiprobe) for long term deployment at a site in Lewisville Lake, Texas. Specifically, agreement between a laboratory extraction procedure and the multiprobe chlorophyll/fluorescence readings was examined. Preliminary studies involved determining the best method for disrupting algal cells prior to analysis and examining the precision and linearity of the acetone extraction procedure. Cell disruption by mortar and pestle grinding was preferable to bath sonication. Comparison of the chlorophyll/fluorescence readings from the multiprobe and the extraction procedure indicated that they were significantly correlated but temperature dependent.
Date: May 2001
Creator: Lambert, Patricia
Partner: UNT Libraries

Simulation of local watershed nutrient and sediment delivery to Lake Texoma.

Description: A hydrologic model and watershed export model was used to estimate the loading of nutrients and total suspended solids from un-gaged local watersheds associated with Lake Texoma. Discharge to the reservoir from local watersheds was predicted using a modification of the curve number method in HEC Hydrologic Modeling System (HEC-HMS). Event mean concentrations were applied to land use to estimate loadings of nutrients and TSS. Total discharge from the local watersheds was estimated to be 3.02 x 107 cubic meters for a study window of March 1 to May 31, 1997, less than 10 percent of the input to the lake from the Red River and Washita River systems. Loadings were estimated to be 33,553 kg nitrogen, 4,401 kg phosphorus, and 3,423,140 kg TSS. The models and results obtained from their application appear to have potential utility for use in a water quality management decision support system for the reservoir.
Date: May 2004
Creator: Upton, Alexandra C.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Interpreting Prehistoric Patterns: Site Catchment Analysis in the Upper Trinity River Basin of North Central Texas

Description: Archaeologically site catchment analysis produces valuable information regarding prehistoric subsistence strategies and social organization. Incorporating archaeological data into catchment analyses is an effective strategy to develop regional models of prehistoric site selection and settlement patterns. Digital access to data permits the incorporation of multiple layers of information into the process of synthesizing regional archaeology and interpreting corresponding spatial patterning. GIS software provides a means to integrate digital environmental and archaeological data into an effective tool. Resultant environmental archaeology maps facilitate interpretive analysis. To fulfill the objectives of this thesis, GIS software is employed to construct site catchment areas for archaeological sites and to implement multivariate statistical analyses of physical and biological attributes of catchments in correlation with assemblage data from sites. Guided by ecological, anthropological and geographical theories hypotheses testing evaluates patterns of prehistoric socio-economic behavior. Analytical results are summarized in a model of prehistoric settlement patterns in North Central Texas.
Date: December 2004
Creator: Williams, Marikka Lin
Partner: UNT Libraries

Hyperspectral and Multispectral Image Analysis for Vegetation Study in the Greenbelt Corridor near Denton, Texas

Description: In this research, hyperspectral and multispectral images were utilized for vegetation studies in the greenbelt corridor near Denton. EO-1 Hyperion was the hyperspectral image and Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM) was the multispectral image used for this research. In the first part of the research, both the images were classified for land cover mapping (after necessary atmospheric correction and geometric registration) using supervised classification method with maximum likelihood algorithm and accuracy of the classification was also assessed for comparison. Hyperspectral image was preprocessed for classification through principal component analysis (PCA), segmented principal component analysis and minimum noise fraction (MNF) transform. Three different images were achieved after these pre-processing of the hyperspectral image. Therefore, a total of four images were classified and assessed the accuracy. In the second part, a more precise and improved land cover study was done on hyperspectral image using linear spectral unmixing method. Finally, several vegetation constituents like chlorophyll a, chlorophyll b, caroteoids were distinguished from the hyperspectral image using feature-oriented principal component analysis (FOPCA) method and which component dominates which type of land cover particularly vegetation were correlated.
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Date: August 2006
Creator: Bhattacharjee, Nilanjana
Partner: UNT Libraries

Comparison of GPS Point Selection Methods for GIS Area Measurement of Small Jurisdictional Wetlands

Description: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) regulates fill of jurisdictional waters of the United States including wetlands. Recent USACE regulations set a threshold of impacts to wetlands at one-half acre. Impact area can be determined by Global Positioning System (GPS) measurement of wetland boundary and Geographic Information System (GIS) calculation of impact area. GPS point selection methods include (1) equal time interval, (2) transect and (3) intuition. Four two-acre shapes were measured with each GPS method and brought into GIS for area calculation. Analysis of variance and Root Mean Square Error analyses determine that the transect method is an inferior point selection method in terms of accuracy and efficiency.
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Date: August 2001
Creator: Shelton, Michael
Partner: UNT Libraries

An examination of the riparian bottomland forest in north central Texas through ecology, history, field study, and computer simulation

Description: This paper explores the characterization of a riparian bottomland forest in north central Texas in two ways: field study, and computer simulation with the model ZELIG. First, context is provided in Chapter One with a brief description of a southern bottomland forest, the ecological services it provides, and a history of bottomland forests in Texas from the nineteenth century to the present. A report on a characterization study of the Lake Ray Roberts Greenbelt forest comprises Chapter Two. The final chapter reviews a phytosocial study of a remnant bottomland forest within the Greenbelt. Details of the ZELIG calibration process follow, with a discussion of ways to improve ZELIG's simulation of bottomland forests.
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Date: August 2001
Creator: Holcomb, Sheralyn S.
Partner: UNT Libraries

A New Wireless Sensor Node Design for Program Isolation and Power Flexibility

Description: Over-the-air programming systems for wireless sensor networks have drawbacks that stem from fundamental limitations in the hardware used in current sensor nodes. Also, advances in technology make it feasible to use capacitors as the sole energy storage mechanism for sensor nodes using energy harvesting, but most current designs require additional electronics. These two considerations led to the design of a new sensor node. A microcontroller was chosen that meets the Popek and Goldberg virtualization requirements. The hardware design for this new sensor node is presented, as well as a preliminary operating system. The prototypes are tested, and demonstrated to be sustainable with a capacitor and solar panel. The issue of capacitor leakage is considered and measured.
Date: December 2009
Creator: Skelton, Adam W.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Differential use of space: An analysis of the Aubrey Clovis site.

Description: The Aubrey Clovis site is one of the oldest late-Pleistocene sites in North America, dated to ~11,550 B.P., and contains two camps with a range of lithic debitage, numerous hearths, and excellent faunal preservation. Couched in rules of classification, a series of artifact distributions are analyzed with qualitative and quantitative techniques, including maps produced in a geographic information system (GIS) and tests of artifact associations using correlation statistics. Theoretical and methodological protocols are promoted to improve spatial analysis in archaeology. The results support the short-term occupation interpretation and expose the differential patterning among bone, stone, and raw materials distributions. The spatial structure and diverse content of the site challenge models of Clovis-age people as strictly big game hunters.
Date: August 2005
Creator: Witt, Benjamin A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

FACET Simulation in the Imataca Forest Reserve, Venezuela: Permanent Plot Data and Spatial Analysis

Description: Tree diameter data from 29 years of observations in six permanent plots was used to calculate the growth rate parameter of the FACET gap model for 39 species in the Imataca forests in Venezuela. The compound topographic index was used as a measure of differential soil water conditions and was calculated using geographic information systems. Growth rate values and topographic conditions typical of hill and valley were input to FACET to simulate dynamics at the species level and by ecological and functional groups. Species shade-tolerance led to expected successional patterns. Drought-tolerant/saturation-intolerant species grew in the hills whereas drought-intolerant/saturation-tolerant species occurred in the valleys. The results help to understand forest composition in the future and provide guidance to forest management practices.
Date: May 2006
Creator: Figuera, Dilcia
Partner: UNT Libraries

Rainfall-runoff changes due to urbanization: a comparison of different spatial resolutions for lumped surface water hydrology models using HEC-HMS.

Description: Hydrologic models were used to examine the effects of land cover change on the flow regime of a watershed located in North-Central Texas. Additionally, the effect of spatial resolution was examined by conducting the simulations using sub-watersheds of different sizes to account for the watershed. Using the Army Corps of Engineers, Hydrologic Engineering Center Hydrologic Modeling System (HEC-HMS), two different modeling methods were evaluated at the different sub-watershed resolutions for four rainfall events. Calibration results indicate using the smaller spatial resolutions improves the model results. Different scenarios for land cover change were evaluated for all resolutions using both models. As land cover change increased, the amount of flow from the watershed increased.
Date: December 2005
Creator: Redfearn, Howard Daniel
Partner: UNT Libraries

Soil Characteristics Estimation and Its Application in Water Balance Dynamics

Description: This thesis is a contribution to the work of the Texas Environmental Observatory (TEO), which provides environmental information from the Greenbelt Corridor (GBC) of the Elm Fork of the Trinity River. The motivation of this research is to analyze the short-term water dynamic of soil in response to the substantial rainfall events that occurred in North Texas in 2007. Data collected during that year by a TEO soil and weather station located at the GBC includes precipitation, and soil moisture levels at various depths. In addition to these field measurements there is soil texture data obtained from lab experiments. By comparing existing water dynamic models, water balance equations were selected for the study as they reflect the water movement of the soil without complicated interrelation between parameters. Estimations of water flow between soil layers, infiltration rate, runoff, evapotranspiration, water potential, hydraulic conductivity, and field capacity are all obtained by direct and indirect methods. The response of the soil at field scale to rainfall event is interpreted in form of flow and change of soil moisture at each layer. Additionally, the analysis demonstrates that the accuracy of soil characteristic measurement is the main factor that effect physical description. Suggestions for model improvement are proposed. With the implementation of similar measurements over a watershed area, this study would help the understanding of basin-scale rainfall-runoff modeling.
Date: December 2008
Creator: Chen, Liping
Partner: UNT Libraries

Ecological Association Between the Red-Cockaded Woodpecker and Southern Pine Beetle in the Homochitto National Forest: a Geographic Information System Approach

Description: Since the introduction of management practices by the Forest Service to stabilize red-cockaded woodpecker (RCW) populations, the number of cavity trees killed by southern pine beetles (SPB) has increased. A model of the landscape ecology of RCW and SPB in the Homochitto National Forest was created using data collected from the Forest Service and Global Atmospherics. The conclusions of the study were that the RCW and SPB utilize the same type of habitat and the stand hazard maps are an accurate means of determining the locations of SPB infestations. The functional heterogeneity maps created for the SPB and RCW would be useful predictors of future occurrences of either species if complete data were obtained.
Date: December 1998
Creator: Skordinski, Karen R. (Karen Renee)
Partner: UNT Libraries

Underwater Optical Properties of Lake Texoma (Oklahoma-Texas) Using Secchi Disk, Submarine Photometer, and High-Resolution Spectroscopy

Description: The underwater optical climate of Lake Texoma was measured at eleven fixed stations from August 1996 to August 1997. Secchi transparency and submarine photometry characterized seasonal and spatial values of secchi depth (SD), vertical attenuation coefficient (η''), and depth of euphotic zone (Zeu). Indices of Zeu:SD and η'' × SD were compared with universally applied values derived from inland and coastal waters. Turbidity explained 76% of the variation (p = 0.0001) of η'' among water quality parameters, including chlorophyll-α. Using a spectroradiometer, spectral signatures of chlorophyll-α and turbidity were located. Stations with low turbidity exhibited a distinct green reflectance peak around 590-610 nanometers, indicating presence of chlorophyll-α. Stations with high turbidity exhibited a reflectance peak shift towards the red spectrum, making it difficult to detect the chlorophyll signature. Derivative analysis of the reflectance signal at 590-610, and 720-780 nanometers allowed discrimination of this chlorophyll signature from those of turbidity (0.66 ≤ r^2 ≤ 0.99).
Date: August 1998
Creator: Rolbiecki, David A. (David Alan)
Partner: UNT Libraries

Assessing the Potential Effects of Climate Variability on Reservoir Water Volume in North-Central Texas Using GIS and Models: A Case Study of Ray Roberts Lake.

Description: Assessing the impact of climate variability on water resources is one of the difficult tasks in planning the future growth of North-Central Texas. This study defined twelve extreme climate scenarios. Data from each scenario was input to a hydrological model (HEC-HMS) to calculate watershed runoff to Lake Ray Roberts. Model parameters are determined using Geographic Information System (GIS). The water balance was calculated for current and future water demand and resulting change in the volume and level of this reservoir. The results indicate certain climate scenarios decrease in volume. Thus, local governments should plan alternative water management strategies during droughts.
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Date: December 2005
Creator: Osei-Adjei, Peter
Partner: UNT Libraries

Analysis of the One-Horned Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros Unicornis) Habitat in the Royal Chitwan National Park, Nepal.

Description: This study analyzes the remaining suitable habitat of the one-horned rhinoceros, Rhinoceros unicornis, in Royal Chitwan National Park of Nepal. An April 2003 Landsat image was classified into eight land cover types: wetland, sand, water, mixed forest, sal forest, agriculture, settlement, and grassland. This image was converted into habitat suitability maps using cover, food, and water. The rhinoceros prefers grassland habitat with oxbow lakes and closed canopy during the monsoon season. Nominal values of five parameters were used to create a map of habitat suitability index. The map was categorized into four habitat classes: highly unsuitable, unsuitable, moderately suitable habitat, and suitable. Landscape metrics, patch metrics and class metrics associated with habitat were determined through the use of FRAGSTATS.
Date: December 2005
Creator: Thapa, Vivek
Partner: UNT Libraries

Estimated Extent and Fate of Chlorinated Solvent Contamination in the Soil of the Naval Air Station, Dallas, Texas

Description: This thesis estimates the spatial extent of chlorinated solvent contamination of the soil at the Naval Air Station, Dallas, then estimates the fate and transport of these contaminants, over time, using the Soil Transport and Fate database and the Vadose-Zone Interactive Processes (VIP) modeling software. Geostatistical analysis identifies two areas with serious chlorinated solvent contamination. Fate and transport modeling estimates that this contamination will degrade and disperse from the soil phase to below regulatory limits within one year, although there is a risk of groundwater contamination. Contaminants are estimated to persist in the water and air phases of the soil. Further sampling is recommended to confirm the results of this study.
Date: August 1998
Creator: Trescott, Jill V. (Jill Virginia)
Partner: UNT Libraries

Bioreactor Landfill Cell Feasibility Study ' Reference to City of Denton Subtitle-D Permit #1590A Landfill

Description: The City of Denton Landfill, Permit #1590A, utilizes “Dry-Tomb” techniques for disposal and promotion of municipal solid waste stabilization, as described by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) prohibition in 40 CFR. Bioreactor research suggests re-circulating leachate increases biodegradation rates and reduces long-term monitoring from fifty years to less than ten years. Current procedures that are followed at Denton's landfill, literature review and the use of the Hydrologic Evaluation of Landfill Performance (HELP) model, suggest that a bioreactor landfill cell is worthy of further research. Re-circulating leachate and augmenting it with additional liquid will increase biodegradation and the need to design and build a landfill gas collection system to capture methane for energy recovery uses.
Date: May 2002
Creator: Roberts, Elizabeth
Partner: UNT Libraries