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Abstract  

In polymer degradation and durability studies, as well as predicting shelf-life for medical devices, one is confronted with the need for accurate prediction and difficulties of long term real-time evaluation. Various ways to accelerate the degradation process have met with mixed success. However, recently, in our own studies, a ‘master curve’ like behavior was found to be valid for polypropylene samples studied. Evidently, for samples obeying the master curve, very few data points at high temperatures can be scaled to obtain reasonably accurate estimates on long term durability. Nevertheless, in a reference medium density polyethylene (MDPE) film material, the high temperature oxidative induction time data appear to diverge when run under air atmosphere compared with oxygen environments. In this article, we will present data on many of the polymer systems studied with an emphasis on extrapolation schemes for high temperature accelerated data to lower temperature very long-term durability. In this context, polymer and antioxidant reactivity toward oxygen, morphology, and mechanical property dependence on extent of degradation all need to be considered. And the potential and limitations of this approach will be discussed.

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Acta Mathematica Hungarica
Authors: Rui Chi, Shuyan Ding, Weidong Gao, Alfred Geroldinger, and Wolfgang A. Schmid

Summary For a finite abelian group G, we investigate the invariant  s(G) (resp.  the invariant  s0(G)) which is defined as the smallest integer l ? N such that every sequence S in G of length |S| = l has a subsequence T with sum zero and length |T|= exp(G) (resp. length |T|=0 mod exp(G)).

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Trehalose dihydrate, on careful dehydration below its fusion point, retains its original crystal facets but becomes X-ray amorphous, an unusual example of direct crystal-to-glass transformation. From DSC studies, the glass obtained by this route seems to be of abnormally low enthalpy, but after an initial scan, the normal form of glass transition is exhibited, withT g=115‡C, a higher value than previously reported. We give a preliminary thermal and mechanical characterization of this material and find it to be a very fragile liquid. The highT g is shown to rationalize the exceptionally high water content of the trehalose+water solution that vitrifies at ambient temperature (i.e.T g=298 K), and hence helps explain its use by Nature as a desiccation protectant. The spontaneous vitrification of crystalline materials during desolvation is related to the phenomenology of pressure-induced or decompression-induced vitrification of crystals via the concept of limiting metastability.

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To comprehensively understand the genetic basis of plant height (PH), quantitative trait locus (QTL) analysis for internode lengths, internode component indices and plant height component index (PHCI) were firstly conducted in the present study. Two related F8:9 recombinant inbred line (RIL) populations comprising 485 and 229 lines were used. Two hundred and nine putative additive QTL for the eight traits were identified, 35 of which showed significance in at least three trials. Of these, at least 11 pairwise QTL were common to the two populations. PH components at the QTL level had different effects on PH, confirming our previous multivariate conditional analysis (Cui et al. 2011). Eleven major QTL that showed consistency in expression across environments should be of great value in the genetic improvement of PH in wheat. The results above will enhance the understanding of the genetic basis of PH in wheat.

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Grain yield (GY) and yield components (YC) were investigated using two F8: 9 RILs, comprising 229 and 485 lines, respectively. A conditional analysis was conducted to generate conditional values for GY independent of each YC. Then both unconditional and conditional values were analyzed to map QTLs with additive effect. In both RILs, up to 23 unconditional and conditional QTLs were detected. However, only two QTLs were identified repeatedly among environments. All QTLs, except for 4 detected in unconditional mapping, were also identified as conditional QTLs, whereas a number of QTLs were additionally detected in conditional mapping. The number of QTLs detected that affected GY was different with respect to component-special influences. Our results revealed that the contributions of YC influencing QTL expression related to GY differed.

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A recombinant inbred line (RIL) population with 302 lines derived from a cross of Weimai 8 × Luohan 2 was used to identify the quantitative trait loci (QTL) for plant height (PH) in wheat (Triticum aestivum L.). Possible genetic relationships between PH and PH components (PHC), including spike length (SL) and internode length from the first to the fourth node counted from the top, abbreviated as FIITL, SITL, TITL and FOITL, respectively, were evaluated at the QTL level. A QTL for PH was mapped using data on PH and on PH conditioned by PHC using the IciMapping V3.0 software. Conditional QTL mapping proved that, at the QTL level, SL contributed the least to PH, followed by FIITL and FOITL, while TITL had the strongest influence on PH, followed by SITL. These results indicate that the conditional QTL mapping method can be used to evaluate possible genetic relationships between PH and PHC, and that it can efficiently and precisely reveal counteracting QTL, which will enhance our understanding of the genetic basis of PH in wheat.

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