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Recent documents in Wyoming Scholars Repository
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Nature Aesthetics and American Nationalism: Curating Cultural Identity Through Rhetoric and Design of National Park Landscapes

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

In 2016, “America’s Best Idea”, the United States National Park System, celebrated a century of national heritage in natural resource stewardship. As the NPS progresses into its next century, reflection on the semiotics of national park tourism offers a critical perspective on meanings of American Nationalism and identity with management implications for a twenty first century audience. This research acknowledges the originating confluences of artistic and literary romanticism, commercialization of natural resources through tourism, and political annexation of public land during the Reconstruction Era in the establishment of an institutional model that advanced the “monumentalism” of nature. This research analyses the varied political ecology of nature through the lens of historic design and rhetoric concerning cultural landscapes, the people within them, and periods of national crises using national park case studies. This research will offer clarifying perspectives on how nature itself became a national monument in these places.

Type 1 Diabetes and Eating Disorders: The Importance of Healthcare Provider Knowledge of Eating Disorders in Type 1 Diabetes

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

Type 1 diabetes affects more than 3 million people in the United States and the rate of incidence is increasing on a global level (Atkinson, 2014). The diagnosis of type 1 diabetes often occurs prior to or during adolescence and the disease requires a high level of self-management. Adolescence is a challenging time for most people, especially in regards to body changes, weight gain and body image. Due to the diligence required surrounding food and exercise with type 1 diabetes, disordered eating is more likely to occur in these individuals. The rate of eating disorders in those with type 1 diabetes is as much as two times higher than that of their nondiabetic counterparts. Often the presence of an eating disorder is not apparent until complications such as neuropathy, nephropathy, or retinopathy develop, and there is little that can be done to reverse the damage. It is difficult for healthcare providers to detect eating disorders in those with type 1 diabetes due to a lack of education, training, and criteria to diagnose. The goal of this project is to review existing literature for eating disorders among individuals with type 1 diabetes. This literature review also addresses the lack of current diagnostic criteria for the diabetes-specific eating disorder, diabulimia, creating a gap in knowledge for many healthcare professionals. Very few guidelines and support are provided for healthcare providers, therefore an approach on how primary care providers and endocrinologists can better address the needs of individuals with type 1 diabetes and eating disorders is presented.

Exploring sterol function in the bacterium Gemmata obscuriglobus

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

Unlike eukaryotic cells, bacterial cells generally lack membranes that enclose their nucleus, do not contain organelles, and lack cellular compartmentalization altogether. However, members of the Planctomycete-Verrucomicrobia-Chlamydiae (PVC) bacterial superphylum challenge the traditional view of eukaryotes vs. prokaryotes as they contain some of these eukaryotic-like features. An interesting bacterium in this group, Gemmata obscuriglobus, has been shown to have a complex endomembrane system, highly condensed nucleoid region, and segregated transcription and translation. G. obscuriglobus has also been found to produce sterols, which are essential for structure and function of membranes in eukaryotic cells. Sterols only have been detected in a subset of bacteria, however the function remains enigmatic. To explore the function of sterols in G. obscuriglobus, our lab has developed a chemical approach using the drug terbinafine to begin to determine sterol function. We have shown that sterol depletion by terbinafine causes replication defects, suggesting sterols are necessary for survival, the first instance in a bacterium. We are conducting RNA sequencing on treated vs. untreated cells to determine the global effect of sterol depletion. This will allow for the identification of genes responding to sterol depletion. I will conduct quantitative real time polymerase chain reactions on the best hits to verify the RNA sequencing reads. We will utilize a recently developed genetic approach to further elucidate the RNA sequencing best hits function in response to sterol depletion. There may be a relationship between the eukaryotic-like features of G. obscuriglobus and sterol synthesis, and understanding bacterial sterol function could elucidate this.

Creation and Characterization of Aligned Single-Wall Carbon Nanotube Films

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

The one-dimensional nature of individualized single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) enables highly anisotropic thermal, optical, and electronic behavior. Commercial applications, like optical polarizers and electrical current delivery, are thus possible from ensembles of aligned SWCNTs. However, the relative absence of easy-to-perform SWCNT alignment techniques, and thus the lack of polarized nanotube films, has hindered scientific and technical investigations of anisotropic phenomena in SWCNT ensembles. Here, we demonstrate macroscopic SWCNT alignment of both semiconductor and metallic nanotubes using slow vacuum filtration, which builds on a recently discovered method for nanotube alignment. Utilizing polyvinylpyrrolidone-coated filter membranes and surfactant-separated SWCNTs, we are able to produce highly polarized nanotube thin films. We measure the degree of the nanotube polarization using both optical microscopy and polarized optical absorption. From the latter, we find that a nematic ordering parameter of over 0.2 can be achieved, which is close to the theoretical maximum of 0.6; polarized Raman spectroscopy confirms these results. Future measurements using temperature-dependent electrical transport will investigate the feasibility of using these aligned nanotubes for very large electrical current-delivery applications.

Creation and Characterization of Aligned Single-Wall Carbon Nanotube Films

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

The one-dimensional nature of individualized single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) enables highly anisotropic thermal, optical, and electronic behavior. Commercial applications, like optical polarizers and electrical current delivery, are thus possible from ensembles of aligned SWCNTs. However, the relative absence of easy-to-perform SWCNT alignment techniques, and thus the lack of polarized nanotube films, has hindered scientific and technical investigations of anisotropic phenomena in SWCNT ensembles. Here, we demonstrate macroscopic SWCNT alignment of both semiconductor and metallic nanotubes using slow vacuum filtration, which builds on a recently discovered method for nanotube alignment. Utilizing polyvinylpyrrolidone-coated filter membranes and surfactant-separated SWCNTs, we are able to produce highly polarized nanotube thin films. We measure the degree of the nanotube polarization using both optical microscopy and polarized optical absorption. From the latter, we find that a nematic ordering parameter of over 0.2 can be achieved, which is close to the theoretical maximum of 0.6; polarized Raman spectroscopy confirms these results. Future measurements using temperature-dependent electrical transport will investigate the feasibility of using these aligned nanotubes for very large electrical current-delivery applications.

Synthesis of Novel Diazeniumdiolate and Sydnonate-N-oxide Products

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

Nitric oxide (NO) is known to react with carbanions and secondary amines as a cis-dimeric molecule (cis-N2O2) to form useful NO-donor reagents known as NONOates. Rare examples for trans-N2O2 addition are also known. Active methylene-group containing α-alkylcarboxylates undergo trans-N2O2 addition leading to the formation of sydnonate-N-oxide salts. The diazeniumdiolate and sydnonate-N-oxide products exhibit varying levels of stability in aqueous media, and some of them are capable of releasing NO under physiological conditions. Such compounds are of great recent interest as pro-drugs for NO-delivery in the treatment of heart diseases. Interestingly, the two classes of products also exhibit high-energy density properties and are potential monopropellants. In this project, we synthesized new diazeniumdiolate and sydnonate-N-oxide products, and studied their decomposition properties. Methyl cyanoacetate reacts with NO in the presence of ammonium hydroxide and alkali hydroxides forming an unstable and reactive diazeniumdiolate. The poorly characterized product decomposes in aqueous solutions releasing NO and forming a stable sydnonate-N-oxide. The final product is stable, and is characterized by UV-Vis, IR and NMR spectroscopic data, and single crystal X-ray diffraction analysis as potassium trimethyl 1,3-dinitrilopropenyl-1,2,3-tricarboxylate. The release of NO from the less stable diazeniumdiolate in aqueous media at pH 7.4 under ambient conditons is verified by the trapping of the free radical with the well-known NO-trapping reagent Fe(MGD)2. EPR spectral data measured for the NO adduct of Fe(MGD)2 exhibits the expected three-line pattern.

Semiautonomous Robotic Arm

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

Autonomy has been on the up and up for quite some time and chances are it will be here to stay. There are many industries out there which automate their processes. The type of equipment and process used will depend largely upon the task at hand. Some people may use cameras and software that sends alerts when a problem is detected. Other people might use robots to help automate their task. The purpose of our project is to design and build a robotic arm which will be able to autonomously pick up objects that it is taught to recognize. The objects it is taught to recognize will most likely be various beer bottles, cans, and other simple objects such as blocks. The arm itself could have several potential applications in different work environments such as picking objects up off of an assembly line or recording a presentation by holding a camera which follows a presenter as they move around. There are many other potential uses for the arm aside from what we are trying to accomplish. These other tasks could be accomplished with some slight modifications to the design.

Semiautonomous Robotic Arm

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

Autonomy has been on the up and up for quite some time and chances are it will be here to stay. There are many industries out there which automate their processes. The type of equipment and process used will depend largely upon the task at hand. Some people may use cameras and software that sends alerts when a problem is detected. Other people might use robots to help automate their task. The purpose of our project is to design and build a robotic arm which will be able to autonomously pick up objects that it is taught to recognize. The objects it is taught to recognize will most likely be various beer bottles, cans, and other simple objects such as blocks. The arm itself could have several potential applications in different work environments such as picking objects up off of an assembly line or recording a presentation by holding a camera which follows a presenter as they move around. There are many other potential uses for the arm aside from what we are trying to accomplish. These other tasks could be accomplished with some slight modifications to the design.

Electronic Stethoscope

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

In almost every encounter with a medical professional, the one thing that can be counted on is that someone will record vital sign data. It only makes sense because some of these vitals, like heart rate and condition, make up the body’s most basic functions. However, when listening to the heart, it can sometimes be tricky to notice specific cues through natural acoustics alone. On top of that, the patient loses the opportunity to listen to, and learn from, these moments as well. The goal of this project was to create an electronic stethoscope capable of transmitting data through Bluetooth signals to a receiver. This receiver could then be plugged in to different audio systems, depending on preference of the user, to listen to and evaluate the human heart. A 9-volt signal is run through a pre-amplifier, to prepare it for the impeding gain. Then, the signal makes its way through two operational amplifiers, a potentiometer for gain control, and finally a low noise audio amplifier before being delivered to the stereo audio output and then to the various Bluetooth devices.

Manifest Liberia: The American Colonization Society and the Formation of Liberia

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

The country of Liberia did not exist until 1821 when a boat arrived from New York, carrying members of a Christian organization called the American Colonization Society and Black families who sought solace from a society that continued to discriminate against black communities them due to their skin color even though they were no longer under the chains of slavery. They were to start a new society, a Black Republic, on the lands that their ancestors were taken from years before. These families wanted to bring western culture, such as Democracy and Christianity, of the United States to their new country but this leads to important questions, such as what about the cultural groups that already existed in the region? How do the two parties interact and how does that shape how the country is formed? How did the interaction with prior European traders shape the region into what it was in the nineteenth century? With the development of the Liberian state, a new social and political identity of Americo-Liberians is established within the region. The Americo-Liberians established themselves on the top of the political and social hierarchy, allowing them to push the platform of Christianity and Western Culture within the country in a region populated by various cultural groups such as the coastal Vai and the Grebo in the Hinterland who have been existing in region for decades.

Honors Program Web and Mobile Application

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

The University of Wyoming Honors Program provides its students with access to special coursework, scholarships, and priority class registration. Administrative overhead is generated as a result of providing these services. Currently, students are advised of scholarship opportunities and events via email. Priority registration occurs through the use of paper sign-up sheets to collect student information. Students currently do not have a method of saving general information for use with Honors Program-specific scholarship applications. The project’s goal was to provide a comprehensive platform that addressed the administrative needs of Program staff. We chose to use a LAMP stack due to its flexibility. A web interface was created in a self-hosted CentOS 7 virtual environment using the PHP MVC framework Laravel, powered by a MySQL database. The interface allows for administrators of the site to add/edit/delete items such as News Articles, Web Pages, Program Events, and Scholarship Opportunities. The interface allows administrators to send alerts and notifications to the student base. Registration events can be created and posted so that priority registration and event attendance can be tracked and associated with either a student’s login information or a one-time code. The application utilizes QR codes as a method of quickly registering a student as having attended an event. We also created a side-by-side Android mobile application to allow students to quickly and easily access the data from the web interface via our web API and allow for the administrators to update students via push notifications.

Honors Program Web and Mobile Application

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

The University of Wyoming Honors Program provides its students with access to special coursework, scholarships, and priority class registration. Administrative overhead is generated as a result of providing these services. Currently, students are advised of scholarship opportunities and events via email. Priority registration occurs through the use of paper sign-up sheets to collect student information. Students currently do not have a method of saving general information for use with Honors Program-specific scholarship applications. The project’s goal was to provide a comprehensive platform that addressed the administrative needs of Program staff. We chose to use a LAMP stack due to its flexibility. A web interface was created in a self-hosted CentOS 7 virtual environment using the PHP MVC framework Laravel, powered by a MySQL database. The interface allows for administrators of the site to add/edit/delete items such as News Articles, Web Pages, Program Events, and Scholarship Opportunities. The interface allows administrators to send alerts and notifications to the student base. Registration events can be created and posted so that priority registration and event attendance can be tracked and associated with either a student’s login information or a one-time code. The application utilizes QR codes as a method of quickly registering a student as having attended an event. We also created a side-by-side Android mobile application to allow students to quickly and easily access the data from the web interface via our web API and allow for the administrators to update students via push notifications.

Implications and Effectiveness of Half-time Pay for Salaried Employee Overtime

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

Half-time pay is an option for salaried employees to receive as an overtime benefit. Based on a fluctuating work-week schedule, employees with varying hours can be compensated for additional hours worked over 40, through the use of half-time pay. If an employee works less than 40 hours in a week, he/she will still receive the full salary compensation; however, any hours over 40 will receive a wage at half-time of normal pay. My research included examining current policies and analyzing the potentially positive and negative effects of half-time pay for salaried employee overtime. Factors such as retention, fairness, and equity were considered when evaluating the potential effectiveness of half-time pay. By taking into account different management techniques for motivating employees in the workplace and considering the pros and cons of using half-time pay as an overtime pay method, I make a recommendation of how and when half-time pay should be used. Executed in the right conditions, using half-time pay for a salaried employee’s overtime can be an effective tool for increasing both employee motivation and moral.

Shifting Landscapes

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

With a densely populated coastline and a core almost void of human habitation, Australia allows a unique perspective into the dual natured actions and beliefs of humans and our environment. Looking toward shifts in the landscape both natural and cultural, my research focused on these interactions both internationally in Australia and domestically. I present it now compiled together with images and thoughts in a self-published magazine.

Shifting Landscapes

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

With a densely populated coastline and a core almost void of human habitation, Australia allows a unique perspective into the dual natured actions and beliefs of humans and our environment. Looking toward shifts in the landscape both natural and cultural, my research focused on these interactions both internationally in Australia and domestically. I present it now compiled together with images and thoughts in a self-published magazine.

Geographic Variation in Bumblebee Flight Morphology Suggests Aerodynamic Limitations on Upslope Range Shifts

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

Geographic ranges of diverse species have shifted poleward and up mountain slopes in response to warming climate. Upslope shifts facilitate tracking of climatic niches over short geographic distances. However, flying organisms moving upslope encounter a novel challenge – reduced air density limiting force production of wings. Whether flying insects may overcome this limitation to upslope shifts through changing flight morphology is largely unknown. Recent studies reveal climate-driven northward and upslope range shifts for dozens of bumblebee (genus Bombus) species, which thrive in diverse habitats from sea level to over 5000 m elevation. We measured geographic variation in flight morphology of two Western North American bumblebees (Bombus vosnesenskii and Bombus bifarius) collected across multiple years and seasons from 36 to 48 °N latitude and from sea level to over 2900 m in elevation. We measured body mass of field-caught foragers before and after emptying the crop, and wing area by analyzing images of clipped wings of over 1500 individual bees. The alpine specialist, B. bifarius was smaller overall, with field mass increasing significantly with latitude and altitude. The larger species, B. vosnesenskii, showed no change in body size with latitude or altitude. Wing loading (body mass relative to wing area) changed little with Wyoming Undergraduate Research Day 2017 Page 118 latitude but decreased strongly with altitude, particularly for B. bifarius, a species more common in alpine areas. Relatively high wing loading and limited changes in wing loading with altitude for B. vosnesnskii may limit the ability of this species to move upslope to track climate change.

The State of Coal in Wyoming

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

Coal has been part of Wyoming’s economy since the late 1800s and continues to have a major influence on the state. Since mining began, trends of rising and falling prices for coal have created economic instability. Currently, Wyoming’s coal industry is experiencing a downturn, leading to lay-offs and financial hardship for the state and municipalities. The Wyoming legislature has attempted to invigorate the industry through several pieces of legislation. Some of these include increasing the purview of the Wyoming Infrastructure Authority, funding the Integrated Technology Center in Gillette, and preventing new taxation on the industry. Governor Matt Mead has prioritized diversifying not only the coal industry but also the state economy as a whole. Nationally the Trump Administration is attempting to revive the industry through the removal of regulations imposed by multiple agencies. While these measures are helping in some ways to make coal viable as an energy source again, the reality is that the coal industry globally is struggling. Government can only do so much to promote industry. Rather than market coal as an energy source, one company in Wyoming is proposing to refine and provide it as a feedstock for manufacturing carbon-based products. Ramaco Carbon, a Sheridan-based company, is in the initial stages of creating a large-scale research, development and manufacturing site with several tenants engaged in carbon-based manufacturing. Their efforts could change the future of coal in Wyoming.

Socket Golf – Building a Google Cardboard Game in Unity

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

Virtual reality is a new and emerging technology in the field of computer science designed to immerse the consumer into the product. To study and learn more about this technology, a four-person team of graduating seniors set out to build a mobile game for Google Cardboard. The game created uses the Unity game engine along with Unity multiplayer servers for the development tools. The application was designed to be run using both a Google Cardboard headset and an android controller to allow the user to control the game without removing themselves from the immersive experience. The idea for the game came from an existing game called Rocket League where the premise is to play soccer with a car. Throughout the design process the ideas for the game changed, but the final product, rightly named Socket Golf, is a mixture of soccer and golf. Each player spawns a bean-like character and plays a game of golf with a soccer ball. The player is provided with three different kick angles and kick strengths they can cycle through to assist them in getting the ball into the hole. The final product of the project consists of three main components for the game which include a tutorial where the user can learn the controls, single player where the user wants to make a hole in as little strokes as possible, and multiplayer mode where two players can fight each other to be the first to get the ball in the hole.

Socket Golf – Building a Google Cardboard Game in Unity

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

Virtual reality is a new and emerging technology in the field of computer science designed to immerse the consumer into the product. To study and learn more about this technology, a four-person team of graduating seniors set out to build a mobile game for Google Cardboard. The game created uses the Unity game engine along with Unity multiplayer servers for the development tools. The application was designed to be run using both a Google Cardboard headset and an android controller to allow the user to control the game without removing themselves from the immersive experience. The idea for the game came from an existing game called Rocket League where the premise is to play soccer with a car. Throughout the design process the ideas for the game changed, but the final product, rightly named Socket Golf, is a mixture of soccer and golf. Each player spawns a bean-like character and plays a game of golf with a soccer ball. The player is provided with three different kick angles and kick strengths they can cycle through to assist them in getting the ball into the hole. The final product of the project consists of three main components for the game which include a tutorial where the user can learn the controls, single player where the user wants to make a hole in as little strokes as possible, and multiplayer mode where two players can fight each other to be the first to get the ball in the hole.

Reactions of Nitric Oxide with β-Hydroxylimino Esters

Wed, 2017-06-28 05:25

Nitric oxide (NO) and its one electron reduction product nitroxyl (HNO) are known to act as vasodilators in mammals, including humans, and are considered a possible cure to cardiovascular diseases. However, their instability and high reactivity with atmospheric oxygen preclude the direct use of them as drugs. Recent work has shown that NO donor molecules can be used as pro-drugs to deliver NO to the appropriate bio-sites. Therefore, there is considerable research interest in the synthesis and studies of donors capable of releasing either of the molecules under physiological conditions. As part of our research effort towards the synthesis of new NO- and HNO-donors, we have synthesized new nitroxy derivatives from the reaction of two β-hydroxylimino esters namely, methyl 3-hydroxyliminobutanoate and methyl 3-hydroxyliminopentanoate, with potassium hydroxide and NO. The isolated products are characterized as potassium 3-methyl- and 3-ethylisoxazolone-4-diazeniumdiolate. The new diazeniumdiolates are first examples of diazeniumdiolate-substituted isoxazolone. Under modified conditions, the reactions yield the potassium salts of 5-acetyl- and 5-propionylsydnonate-N-oxides.

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