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  • 1 Marcel Bauer Doctoral School, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Boszorkány u. 2, H-7624Pécs, Hungary
  • | 2 Department of Mechanical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, Institute of Smart Technology and Engineering, University of Pécs, Boszorkány u. 2, H-7624Pécs, Hungary
  • | 3 Department of Architecture, Ybl Miklós Faculty of Architecture and Civil Engineering, Óbuda University, Thököly út 74, 1146Budapest, Hungary
Open access

Abstract

In order to develop and enhance the quality of life in Tunisian urban spaces, the integration of street furniture became a new challenge for urban designers to use new methods and techniques to combine functionality and aesthetics into their design. The main objective of this paper is to focus on the analysis of the street furniture user’s needs in urban spaces to understand and discuss the requirements that should be considered while designing.

Abstract

In order to develop and enhance the quality of life in Tunisian urban spaces, the integration of street furniture became a new challenge for urban designers to use new methods and techniques to combine functionality and aesthetics into their design. The main objective of this paper is to focus on the analysis of the street furniture user’s needs in urban spaces to understand and discuss the requirements that should be considered while designing.

1 Introduction

To lead a better life in urban spaces, street furniture is considered an essential element found on the streets; it has many functions related to the usages of these streets, whether directly or indirectly. Not considering only passages of movement, these streets might be negatively affected by the lack of street furniture designs. The presence of street furniture invites people on foot, usually, to frequent by giving it a vital comfort [1, 2]. This research aims to resolve one of the most critical issues of urban space morphology in Tunisia. Sidi Bou Said was chosen for further study as it became the favorite place of artists and men of culture who were seduced by the village and its atmosphere at the beginning of the 20th century [3].

It is a village in the northern suburb of Tunis, 17 km from the capital. Sidi Bou Said is located at the top of the promontory of "Cape Carthage." It is limited to the north and the east by the sea, to the south by Carthage, and the west by La Marsa, as presented in Fig. 1.

Fig. 1.
Fig. 1.

Geographical situation of Sidi Bou Said (Source: Author)

Citation: Pollack Periodica 17, 2; 10.1556/606.2022.00506

The research is structured in two main parts; the first part presents the questionnaires with Sidi Bou Said community members to assess the applicability of urban street furniture. The second part summarizes the findings and the research results and highlights recommendations for integrating urban street furniture in public spaces.

2 Research methodologies

2.1 Defining a questionnaire analysis

To answer the research aims, the questionnaire was chosen to give an overview about the community of Sidi Bou Said satisfaction with the street furniture design and their knowledge on its importance into the city development [4, 5]. Basing on the percent in Table 1, 22.9% of the asked participants are very dissatisfied, 44.6% are dissatisfied, 12.1% choose to neutral, 14.7% are satisfied, and 5.7% are very satisfied.

Table 1.

How satisfied are you with the street furniture design in Sidi Bou Said

FrequencyPercentValid PercentCumulative Percent, %
ValidVery dissatisfied3622.922.922.9
Dissatisfied7044.644.667.5
Neither1912.112.179.6
Satisfied2314.614.694.3
Very satisfied95.75.7100.0
Total157100.0100.0

The participants were also asked to rate the street furniture integration and adaptation into its environment if they were satisfied with its comfort, accessibility, and design (see Figs 2 4).

Fig. 2.
Fig. 2.

How do you rate the street furniture comfort?

Citation: Pollack Periodica 17, 2; 10.1556/606.2022.00506

Fig. 3.
Fig. 3.

How do you rate the street furniture accessibility?

Citation: Pollack Periodica 17, 2; 10.1556/606.2022.00506

Fig. 4.
Fig. 4.

How do you rate the street furniture design?

Citation: Pollack Periodica 17, 2; 10.1556/606.2022.00506

This part is conceived to understand the participant’s points of view about the impact of the revalorization of street furniture on the development of the city. They agree with a percentage of around 85% that revalorizing street furniture is important in promoting the city image (Fig. 5) and about 82% think that street furniture design plays a significant role in the culture of the city (Fig. 6). Most participants, about 83% agree that street furniture is an important element of the character and the identity of a certain area (Fig. 7), and about 81% think that it is important to take into consideration the small-scale planning (street furniture implementation) (Fig. 8).

Fig. 5.
Fig. 5.

Revalorizing street furniture is important in promoting the city image

Citation: Pollack Periodica 17, 2; 10.1556/606.2022.00506

Fig. 6.
Fig. 6.

Street furniture design plays a significant role in the culture of the city

Citation: Pollack Periodica 17, 2; 10.1556/606.2022.00506

Fig. 7.
Fig. 7.

Street furniture is an important element of the character and the identity of a certain area

Citation: Pollack Periodica 17, 2; 10.1556/606.2022.00506

Fig. 8.
Fig. 8.

It is important to take into consideration the small-scale planning (street furniture implementation)

Citation: Pollack Periodica 17, 2; 10.1556/606.2022.00506

Basing this research on the questionnaire results analyses, it seems possible to evaluate and precise the importance of street furniture’s influence on its users and the urban space.

2.2 Proposing a protocol

Sidi Bou Said was chosen as it receives a high number of visitors during the weekends and summer months; it has a population of 5,911 inhabitants [6]. The city hosts international cultural and artistic events as it helps promote the city’s image to investors. According to the Sidi Bou Said municipality, the village has different street furniture that refers to all fixed or mobile objects or devices installed in public space to provide a service to the community [7, 8]. Street furniture was determined considering some necessary essential elements that should be found in Sidi Bou Said:

  1. A.Rest (Shelter, benches, leaning rails…);
  2. B.Information (Banners, signs, mailboxes, message boards, information boards…);
  3. C.Street signage (Traffic signs, traffic lights…);
  4. D.Stalls, stands (Kiosks, stalls…);
  5. E.Parking (Bicycle racks…);
  6. F.Playing furniture (Swings…);
  7. G.Sanitation (Wastebaskets, dinking sinks, toilets…);
  8. H.Lighting (Road lamps, foot lamps, decoration lamps…);
  9. I.Furniture for people with limited mobility (Signs in Braille, tactile paving…);
  10. J.Landscaping (Sculpture, fountains, patterned pavement, planting boxes, pots…);
  11. K.Protection (Billboard, barriers…).

To complete the collected data, interviews and open-ended questions were a better way to understand the society and municipality management [9, 10]. According to informal interviews, features were identified by the landowners and the community of Sidi Bou Said, explaining how it is important to work on street furniture degradation. Street furniture was degraded to the point of eliminating several features in the last years that led to disuse and lack of activities in public spaces.

Within the Mediterranean garden, there is not enough street furniture to create social comfort in the space and create a relation to the identity and culture of the unique city of Sidi Bou Said, just like mentioned in Fig. 9, which could be used by the community and promote the city image for the tourists. The Mediterranean garden was selected for further analysis considering some characteristics: touristic, cultural, and social group’s diversity and geographical situation (in the entrance of the most visited part in Sidi Bou Said).

Fig. 9.
Fig. 9.

Lack of street furniture in terms of design and social comfort (Photo: Author)

Citation: Pollack Periodica 17, 2; 10.1556/606.2022.00506

At this point of research, it seemed necessary to develop a protocol to assess street furniture design considering and evaluating the following features [11]:

  1. Location and implementation rules: Accessibility to all people with good circulation;

  2. Comfort: When it comes to comfort, urban furniture can encourage city dwellers and tourists to take their time to enjoy the present moment and the surrounding landscape;

  3. Accessibility: The urban furniture must be arranged in such a way as to promote the development of an obstacle-free route in outdoor public spaces;

  4. Technical design measurement: Analyzing the model’s design and quality may lead users to create new activities in the space;

  5. Harmonization and city image promotion: Street furniture could advertise and affect the city image in terms of aesthetic/visual appreciation;

  6. Design and city identity: Urban furniture becomes a real issue for municipalities to create an identity;

  7. Materials and sustainability: Design for use of recycled materials with a minimum negative impact on the environment.

3 Proposed recommendations: testing the protocol

As a necessary factor to have functional street furniture, it must fit the human ergonomic [12, 13]. The proposed protocol presented in Tables 2 and 3 allows identifying necessary features and characteristics to design each street furniture by giving it a specific profile.

Table 2.

Proposed protocol for street furniture observation in terms of location and implementation rules, comfort, accessibility, and technical design measurement

Location and implementation rulesComfortAccessibilityTechnical design measurement
yesnoyesnoyesnoyesno
Street furnitureRestxxxx
Informationxxxx
Street signagexxxx
Stalls, Standsxxxx
Parkingxxxx
Playing furniturexxxx
Sanitationxxxx
Lightingxxxx
Furniture for people with limited mobilityxxxx
Landscapingxxxx
Protectionxxxx
Table 3.

Proposed protocol for street furniture observation in terms of harmonization and city promotion, design and city identity, and materials and sustainability

Harmonization and city image promotionDesign and city identityMaterials and sustainability
yesnoyesnoyesno
Street furnitureRestxxx
Informationxxx
Street signagexxx
Stalls, Standsxxx
Parkingxxx
Playing furniturexxx
Sanitationxxx
Lightingxxx
Furniture for people with limited mobilityxxx
Landscapingxxx
Protectionxxx

As a result, all street furniture types described from A to K were considered and evaluated in order to extract and identify any relationship with the features mentioned above:

  • Street furniture types A, C, and H were the only ones, which all features considered could be found but with a distinct lack of maintenance;

  • Street furniture types D, E, F, and I were not found in the Mediterranean garden;

  • Street furniture type A, B, G, J, and K had a significant lack of quality and maintenance.

The proposed protocol allows researchers to identify critical physical characteristics of each street furniture, thereby classifying its location and occupancy aspects. Through this protocol, the main aspects of each street furniture can be outlined, focusing on the user’s comfort. It is a valuable tool when mapping is needed regarding multiple aspects of street furniture, but it can also be used to analyze public spaces. The data collected are easily obtained because the practical aspects are mainly quantitative. This study conducted questionnaires and interviews with street furniture users to complete the data collected. After analyzing the results, street furniture types A, C, and H were set as the street furniture to be studied in the next phase of this research to answer the above question; what requirements and standards should be considered when designing street furniture? This street furniture represents a fundamental aspect that allows research to be carried out and improved.

4 Conclusions

To appropriate public space, it has to be tangible. It must offer joy to its users by arranging street furniture that is accessible easily, functional and attract individuals to use it legitimately and frequently. According to functions, a classification protocol was illustrated. It is important to classify street furniture to understand and avoid dangers that might exist while practicing life activities; it should facilitate the public space’s users to make them feel safe. More research will be accomplished with the further study of Sidi Bou Said. As a result, street furniture will be shaped to satisfy its community and enhance its quality of life there.

Acknowledgments

The preparation of this paper was supported by Marcel Breuer Doctoral School, University of Pécs and the Municipality of Sidi Bou Said.

References

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    H. Radwan and A. A. G. Morsy , “The importance of integrating street furniture in the visual image of the city,” Int. J. Mod. Eng. Res., vol. 9, no. 2, pp. 2953, 2016.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
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    Street furniture overview , SF Better Streets , 2011. [Online]. Available: http://www.sfbetterstreets.org/find-project-types/streetscape-elements/street-furniture-overview/. Accessed: Sep. 8, 2021.

    • Crossref
    • Export Citation
  • [3]

    E. Burulyanov , “The use of color in Mediterranean culture,” BSc Thesis, University of Malta, 2009.

  • [4]

    D. Zhao , B. Bachmann , and T. Wand , “Architecture and landscape design for Beikanzi Village in China: An investigation of human settlement and environment,” Pollack Period., vol. 13, no. 2, pp. 231236, 2018.

    • Search Google Scholar
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    J. Besa , “Intersection between preservation and urban development of the historic centers and a new approach to integrated planning and development control: Case study Prizren,” PhD Thesis, Marcel Breuer Doctoral School, University of Pecs, 2018.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
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    National Statistics Institute [Online]. Available: http://www.ins.tn/en/statistiques/111. Accessed: Sep. 17, 2021.

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    Benches and seating , SF setter streets , 2011. [Online]. Available: http://www.sfbetterstreets.org/find-projecttypes/streetscape-elements/street-furniture-overview/benches-and-seating/. Accessed: Sep. 13, 2021.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • [8]

    Banners, SF Better Streets, 2011. [Online]. Available: http://www.sfbetterstreets.org/find-project-types/streetscape-elements/street-furniture-overview/banners/. Accessed: Sep. 11, 2021.

    • Crossref
    • Export Citation
  • [9]

    L. Gouvea and C. Mont’Alvão , “Observing the urban space: A protocol to analyze street furniture in public squares,” in Proc. Hum. Factors Ergon. Soc. Annu. Meet., vol. 57, no. 1, pp. 555559, 2013.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • [10]

    S, Nesma , “Developing a strategy for designing light in drug addiction centers,” Pollack Period., vol. 16, no. 1, pp. 151156, 2020.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • [11]

    B. Feng and P. Xia , “Study on the method of landscape ecological design for the urban furniture,” Appl. Mech. Mater., vols, 522–524, pp. 16451648, 2014.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • [12]

    P. Ghorab and G. F. Y. Caymaz , “Evaluation of street furniture according to basic design principles,” Int. J. Electron. Mech. Mechatron. Eng., vol. 4, no. 3, pp. 757772, 2015.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • [13]

    P. H. Wan , “Street furniture design principles and implementations: Case studies of street furniture design in densely populated old urban areas”, MSc Thesis, School of Design, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, 2008.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • [1]

    H. Radwan and A. A. G. Morsy , “The importance of integrating street furniture in the visual image of the city,” Int. J. Mod. Eng. Res., vol. 9, no. 2, pp. 2953, 2016.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • [2]

    Street furniture overview , SF Better Streets , 2011. [Online]. Available: http://www.sfbetterstreets.org/find-project-types/streetscape-elements/street-furniture-overview/. Accessed: Sep. 8, 2021.

    • Crossref
    • Export Citation
  • [3]

    E. Burulyanov , “The use of color in Mediterranean culture,” BSc Thesis, University of Malta, 2009.

  • [4]

    D. Zhao , B. Bachmann , and T. Wand , “Architecture and landscape design for Beikanzi Village in China: An investigation of human settlement and environment,” Pollack Period., vol. 13, no. 2, pp. 231236, 2018.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • [5]

    J. Besa , “Intersection between preservation and urban development of the historic centers and a new approach to integrated planning and development control: Case study Prizren,” PhD Thesis, Marcel Breuer Doctoral School, University of Pecs, 2018.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • [6]

    National Statistics Institute [Online]. Available: http://www.ins.tn/en/statistiques/111. Accessed: Sep. 17, 2021.

  • [7]

    Benches and seating , SF setter streets , 2011. [Online]. Available: http://www.sfbetterstreets.org/find-projecttypes/streetscape-elements/street-furniture-overview/benches-and-seating/. Accessed: Sep. 13, 2021.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • [8]

    Banners, SF Better Streets, 2011. [Online]. Available: http://www.sfbetterstreets.org/find-project-types/streetscape-elements/street-furniture-overview/banners/. Accessed: Sep. 11, 2021.

  • [9]

    L. Gouvea and C. Mont’Alvão , “Observing the urban space: A protocol to analyze street furniture in public squares,” in Proc. Hum. Factors Ergon. Soc. Annu. Meet., vol. 57, no. 1, pp. 555559, 2013.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • [10]

    S, Nesma , “Developing a strategy for designing light in drug addiction centers,” Pollack Period., vol. 16, no. 1, pp. 151156, 2020.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • [11]

    B. Feng and P. Xia , “Study on the method of landscape ecological design for the urban furniture,” Appl. Mech. Mater., vols, 522–524, pp. 16451648, 2014.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • [12]

    P. Ghorab and G. F. Y. Caymaz , “Evaluation of street furniture according to basic design principles,” Int. J. Electron. Mech. Mechatron. Eng., vol. 4, no. 3, pp. 757772, 2015.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • [13]

    P. H. Wan , “Street furniture design principles and implementations: Case studies of street furniture design in densely populated old urban areas”, MSc Thesis, School of Design, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, 2008.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
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Editorial Board

  • Bálint Bachmann (Institute of Architecture, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Hungary)
  • Jeno Balogh (Department of Civil Engineering Technology, Metropolitan State University of Denver, Denver, Colorado, USA)
  • Radu Bancila (Department of Geotechnical Engineering and Terrestrial Communications Ways, Faculty of Civil Engineering and Architecture, “Politehnica” University Timisoara, Romania)
  • Charalambos C. Baniotopolous (Department of Civil Engineering, Chair of Sustainable Energy Systems, Director of Resilience Centre, School of Engineering, University of Birmingham, U.K.)
  • Oszkar Biro (Graz University of Technology, Institute of Fundamentals and Theory in Electrical Engineering, Austria)
  • Ágnes Borsos (Institute of Architecture, Department of Interior, Applied and Creative Design, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Hungary)
  • Matteo Bruggi (Dipartimento di Ingegneria Civile e Ambientale, Politecnico di Milano, Italy)
  • Petra Bujňáková (Department of Structures and Bridges, Faculty of Civil Engineering, University of Žilina, Slovakia)
  • Anikó Borbála Csébfalvi (Department of Civil Engineering, Institute of Smart Technology and Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Hungary)
  • Mirjana S. Devetaković (Faculty of Architecture, University of Belgrade, Serbia)
  • Szabolcs Fischer (Department of Transport Infrastructure and Water Resources Engineering, Faculty of Architerture, Civil Engineering and Transport Sciences Széchenyi István University, Győr, Hungary)
  • Radomir Folic (Department of Civil Engineering, Faculty of Technical Sciences, University of Novi Sad Serbia)
  • Jana Frankovská (Department of Geotechnics, Faculty of Civil Engineering, Slovak University of Technology in Bratislava, Slovakia)
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  • Kay Hameyer (Chair in Electromagnetic Energy Conversion, Institute of Electrical Machines, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology, RWTH Aachen University, Germany)
  • Elena Helerea (Dept. of Electrical Engineering and Applied Physics, Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Transilvania University of Brasov, Romania)
  • Ákos Hutter (Department of Architecture and Urban Planning, Institute of Architecture, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technolgy, University of Pécs, Hungary)
  • Károly Jármai (Institute of Energy and Chemical Machinery, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Informatics, University of Miskolc, Hungary)
  • Teuta Jashari-Kajtazi (Department of Architecture, Faculty of Civil Engineering and Architecture, University of Prishtina, Kosovo)
  • Róbert Kersner (Department of Technical Informatics, Institute of Information and Electrical Technology, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Hungary)
  • Rita Kiss  (Biomechanical Cooperation Center, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Budapest, Hungary)
  • István Kistelegdi  (Department of Building Structures and Energy Design, Institute of Architecture, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Hungary)
  • Stanislav Kmeť (President of University Science Park TECHNICOM, Technical University of Kosice, Slovakia)
  • Imre Kocsis  (Department of Basic Engineering Research, Faculty of Engineering, University of Debrecen, Hungary)
  • László T. Kóczy (Department of Information Sciences, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Informatics and Electrical Engineering, University of Győr, Hungary)
  • Dražan Kozak (Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Josip Juraj Strossmayer University of Osijek, Croatia)
  • György L. Kovács (Department of Technical Informatics, Institute of Information and Electrical Technology, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Hungary)
  • Balázs Géza Kövesdi (Department of Structural Engineering, Faculty of Civil Engineering, Budapest University of Engineering and Economics, Budapest, Hungary)
  • Tomáš Krejčí (Department of Mechanics, Faculty of Civil Engineering, Czech Technical University in Prague, Czech Republic)
  • Jaroslav Kruis (Department of Mechanics, Faculty of Civil Engineering, Czech Technical University in Prague, Czech Republic)
  • Miklós Kuczmann (Department of Automations, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Informatics and Electrical Engineering, Széchenyi István University, Győr, Hungary)
  • Tibor Kukai (Department of Engineering Studies, Institute of Smart Technology and Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Hungary)
  • Maria Jesus Lamela-Rey (Departamento de Construcción e Ingeniería de Fabricación, University of Oviedo, Spain)
  • János Lógó  (Department of Structural Mechanics, Faculty of Civil Engineering, Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Hungary)
  • Carmen Mihaela Lungoci (Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Universitatea Transilvania Brasov, Romania)
  • Frédéric Magoulés (Department of Mathematics and Informatics for Complex Systems, Centrale Supélec, Université Paris Saclay, France)
  • Gabriella Medvegy (Department of Interior, Applied and Creative Design, Institute of Architecture, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Hungary)
  • Tamás Molnár (Department of Visual Studies, Institute of Architecture, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Hungary)
  • Ferenc Orbán (Department of Mechanical Engineering, Institute of Smart Technology and Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Hungary)
  • Zoltán Orbán (Department of Civil Engineering, Institute of Smart Technology and Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Hungary)
  • Dmitrii Rachinskii (Department of Mathematical Sciences, The University of Texas at Dallas, Texas, USA)
  • Chro Radha (Chro Ali Hamaradha) (Sulaimani Polytechnic University, Technical College of Engineering, Department of City Planning, Kurdistan Region, Iraq)
  • Maurizio Repetto (Department of Energy “Galileo Ferraris”, Politecnico di Torino, Italy)
  • Zoltán Sári (Department of Technical Informatics, Institute of Information and Electrical Technology, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Hungary)
  • Grzegorz Sierpiński (Department of Transport Systems and Traffic Engineering, Faculty of Transport, Silesian University of Technology, Katowice, Poland)
  • Zoltán Siménfalvi (Institute of Energy and Chemical Machinery, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Informatics, University of Miskolc, Hungary)
  • Andrej Šoltész (Department of Hydrology, Faculty of Civil Engineering, Slovak University of Technology in Bratislava, Slovakia)
  • Zsolt Szabó (Faculty of Information Technology and Bionics, Pázmány Péter Catholic University, Hungary)
  • Mykola Sysyn (Chair of Planning and Design of Railway Infrastructure, Institute of Railway Systems and Public Transport, Technical University of Dresden, Germany)
  • András Timár (Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Hungary)
  • Barry H. V. Topping (Heriot-Watt University, UK, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Pécs, Hungary)

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Pollack Periodica
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