• Water and Energy Consumption at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology

      Wiche Latorre, Pia Alexandra (2012-05)
      Saudi Arabia is the greatest exporter of oil in the world and also the country with greatest desalination capacity. It is considered a rich country but not a developed one. Because water is scarce while energy is abundant, it becomes important to evaluate the environmental performance of populations in Saudi Arabia with regards to these two aspects. King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) is a gated community in Saudi Arabia with high living standards where water and energy are free of cost (no constraint over use). Four environmental sustainability indicators were used to determine the environmental performance of KAUST in comparison to other countries. It was found that per capita, KAUST is between the five greatest water and energy consumers in the world. Important factors to this result are the fact that KAUST is still under construction, that the peak capacity for permanent residents has not yet been reached and that there is little control over the water and energy systems at KAUST. It was concluded that KAUST should reduce its water and energy consumption per capita. To this means, some proposed solutions were to have wide-spread awareness-raising campaigns to all people working and living in KAUST, and to improve control over air conditioning control systems.
    • Wavefield Extrapolation in Pseudo-depth Domain

      Ma, Xuxin (2011-12-11)
      Wave-equation based seismic migration and inversion tools are widely used by the energy industry to explore hydrocarbon and mineral resources. By design, most of these techniques simulate wave propagation in a space domain with the vertical axis being depth measured from the surface. Vertical depth is popular because it is a straightforward mapping of the subsurface space. It is, however, not computationally cost-effective because the wavelength changes with local elastic wave velocity, which in general increases with depth in the Earth. As a result, the sampling per wavelength also increases with depth. To avoid spatial aliasing in deep fast media, the seismic wave is oversampled in shallow slow media and therefore increase the total computation cost. This issue is effectively tackled by using the vertical time axis instead of vertical depth. This is because in a vertical time representation, the "wavelength" is essentially time period for vertical rays. This thesis extends the vertical time axis to the pseudo-depth axis, which features distance unit while preserving the properties of the vertical time representation. To explore the potentials of doing wave-equation based imaging in the pseudo-depth domain, a Partial Differential Equation (PDE) is derived to describe acoustic wave in this new domain. This new PDE is inherently anisotropic because the use of a constant vertical velocity to convert between depth and vertical time. Such anisotropy results in lower reflection coefficients compared with conventional space domain modeling results. This feature is helpful to suppress the low wavenumber artifacts in reverse-time migration images, which are caused by the widely used cross-correlation imaging condition. This thesis illustrates modeling acoustic waves in both conventional space domain and pseudo-depth domain. The numerical tool used to model acoustic waves is built based on the lowrank approximation of Fourier integral operators. To investigate the potential of seismic imaging in the pseudo-depth domain, examples of zero-offset migration are implemented in pseudo-depth domain and compared with conventional space domain imaging results.
    • Weekly variation of viruses and heterotrophic nanoflagellates and their potential impact on bacterioplankton in a Red Sea shallow ecosystem

      Sabbagh, Eman I. (2018-09)
      Heterotrophic bacterioplankton plays a pivotal role in marine food webs and biogeochemical cycling. However, their temporal dynamics and underlying factors are still poorly understood in many regions, including the tropical waters of the Red Sea. The main goal of the MS project was to describe the seasonality and assess the impact of top-down controls (viruses and heterotrophic nanoflagellates) in parallel to bottom-up controls (substrate availability) on coastal bacterioplankton on a weekly basis. To that end, we monitored the abundance of the different planktonic groups by flow cytometry together with a set of environmental variables including temperature, salinity, dissolved organic carbon (DOC) and nitrogen (DON) and chlorophyll a concentration. We analyzed a weekly dataset collected over 2017 at the surface water of KAUST Harbor. The abundance of heterotrophic bacteria ranged from 1.55 to 4.97 x 105 cells ml-1, with that of autotrophic bacteria 4 to 14 fold less on average and presents 1 x 104 to 1.19x105 cells ml-1, while viruses ranged from 1.30 x 106 to 1.59 x 107 particles ml-1, and heterotrophic nanoflagellates (HNF) ranged from 8.62 x 10 to 1.63 x 103 cells ml-1. We distinguished between five groups of heterotrophic bacteria depending on the relative nucleic acid content, membrane state and cell-specific metabolic activity, two groups of Synechococcus, as well as three groups of viruses based on relative nucleic acid content. We found unexpected inverse relationship between viruses and HNFs. Based on a strong negative correlation, the results suggest that viruses controlled heterotrophic bacteria during summer until early winter period. HNFs showed a selective grazing behavior based their apparent preference to prey on both high (HNA) and low nucleic acid bacteria (LNA). Our results demonstrates that top-down control are key agents of heterotrophic bacterioplankton mortality and more important than bottom-up control in governing heterotrophic bacterioplankton abundances in the coastal tropical waters of the Red Sea.
    • A WiFi Tracking Device Printed Directly on Textile for Wearable Electronics Applications

      Krykpayev, Bauyrzhan (2015-12)
      Wearable technology is quickly becoming commonplace in our everyday life - fit-ness and health monitors, smart watches, and Google Glass, just to name a few. It is very clear that in near future the wearable technology will only grow. One of the biggest wearable fields is the E-textiles. E-textiles empower clothes with new functionality by enhancing fabrics with electronics and interconnects. The main obstacle to the development of E-textile field is the relative difficulty and large tolerance in its manufacturing as compared to the standard circuit production. Current methods such as the application of conductive foils, embroidering of conductive wires and treatment with conductive coatings do not possess efficient, fast and reliable mass production traits inherent to the electronic industry. On the other hand, the method of conductive printing on textile has the potential to unlock the efficiency similar to PCB production, due to its roll-to-roll and reel-to-reel printing capabilities. Further-more, printing on textiles is a common practice to realize graphics, artwork, etc. and thus adaptability to conductive ink printing will be relatively easier. Even though conductive printing is a fully additive process, the end circuit layout is very similar to the one produced via PCB manufacture. However, due to high surface roughness and porosity of textiles, efficient and reliable printing on textile has remained elusive. Direct conductive printing on textile is possible but only on specialized dense and tightly interwoven fabrics. Such fabrics are usually uncommon and expensive. Another option is to employ an interface layer that flattens the textile surface, thus allowing printing on it. The interface layer method can be used with a variety of textiles such as polyester/cotton that can be found in any store, making this method promising for wearable electronics. Very few examples and that too of simple structures such as a line, square patch or electrode have been reported which utilize an interface layer [1{13]. No sophisticated circuit or a system level design involving integration of components on textile has been demonstrated in this medium before. This work, for the first time, demonstrates a complete system printed on a polyester/cotton T-shirt, that helps in tracking the person who is wearing that T-shirt through a smart phone or any Internet enabled device. A low cost dielectric material (Creative Materials 116-20 Dielectric ink) is used to print the interface layer through manual screen printing method. The circuit layout and antenna have been ink-jet printed with silver nano-particles based conductive ink. Utilizing WiFi technology, this wearable tracking system can locate the position of lost children, senior citizens, patients or people in uniforms, lab coats, hospital gowns, etc. The device is small enough (55 mm x 45 mm) and light weight (10.5g w/o battery) for people to comfortably wear it and can be easily concealed in case discretion is required. Field tests have revealed that a person can be localized with up to 8 meters accuracy and the device can wirelessly communicate with a hand-held receiver placed 55 meters away. Future development of the method with techniques such as automated screen printing, pick and place components, and digital ink-jet printing can pave the way for mass production.
    • Wireless Physical Layer Security: On the Performance Limit of Secret-Key Agreement

      Zorgui, Marwen (2015-05)
      Physical layer security (PLS) is a new paradigm aiming at securing communications between legitimate parties at the physical layer. Conventionally, achieving confidentiality in communication networks relies on cryptographic techniques such as public-key cryptography, secret-key distribution and symmetric encryption. Such techniques are deemed secure based on the assumption of limited computational abilities of a wiretapper. Given the relentless progress in computational capacities and the dynamic topology and proliferation of modern wireless networks, the relevance of the previous techniques in securing communications is more and more questionable and less and less reliable. In contrast to this paradigm, PLS does not assume a specific computational power at any eavesdropper, its premise to guarantee provable security via employing channel coding techniques at the physical layer exploiting the inherent randomness in most communication systems. In this dissertation, we investigate a particular aspect of PLS, which is secret-key agreement, also known as secret-sharing. In this setup, two legitimate parties try to distill a secret-key via the observation of correlated signals through a noisy wireless channel, in the presence of an eavesdropper who must be kept ignorant of the secret-key. Additionally, a noiseless public channel is made available to the legitimate parties to exchange public messages that are also accessible to the eavesdropper. Recall that key agreement is an important aspect toward realizing secure communications in the sense that the key can be used in a one-time pad scheme to send the confidential message. In the first part, our focus is on secret-sharing over Rayleigh fading quasi-static channels. We study the fundamental relationship relating the probability of error and a given target secret-key rate in the high power regime. This is characterized through the diversity multiplexing tradeoff (DMT) concept, that we define for our model and then characterize it. We show that the impact of the secrecy constraint is to reduce the effective number of transmit antennas by the number of antennas at the eavesdropper. Toward this characterization, we provide several schemes achieving the DMT and we highlight disparities between coding for the wiretap channel and coding for secret-key agreement. In the second part of the present work, we consider a fast-fading setting in which the wireless channels change during each channel use. We consider a correlated environment where transmit, legitimate receiver and eavesdropper antennas are correlated. We characterize the optimal strategy achieving the highest secret-key rate. We also identify the impact of correlation matrices and illustrate our analysis with various numerical results. Finally, we study the system from an energy-efficiency point of view and evaluate relevant metrics as the minimum energy required for sharing a secret-key bit and the wideband slope.
    • Work Function Tuning in Sub-20nm Titanium Nitride (TiN) Metal Gate: Mechanism and Engineering

      Hasan, Mehdi (2011-07)
      Scaling of transistors (the building blocks of modern information age) provides faster computation at the expense of excessive power dissipation. Thus to address these challenges, high-k/metal gate stack has been introduced in commercially available microprocessors from 2007. Since then titanium nitride (TiN) metal gate’s work function (Wf) tunability with its thickness (thickness increases, work function increases) is a well known phenomenon. Many hypotheses have been made over the years which include but not limited to: trap charge and metal gate nucleation, nitrogen concentration, microstructure agglomeration and global stress, metal oxide formation, and interfacial oxide thickness. However, clear contradictions exist in these assumptions. Also, nearly all these reports skipped a comprehensive approach to explain this complex paradigm. Therefore, in this work we first show a comprehensive physical investigation using transmission electron microcopy/electron energy loss spectroscopy (TEM/EELS), x-ray diffraction (XRD), x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS) and secondary ion mass spectroscopy (SIMS) to show replacement of oxygen by nitrogen in the metal/dielectric interface, formation of TiONx, reduction of Ti/N concentration and grain size increment happen with TiN thickness increment and thus may increase the work function. Then, using these finding, we experimentally show 100meV of work function modulation in 10nm TiN Metal-oxide-semiconductor capacitor by using low temperature oxygen annealing. A low thermal budget flow (replicating gate-last) shows similar work function boost up. Also, a work function modulation of 250meV has been possible using oxygen annealing and applying no thermal budget. On the other hand, etch-back of TiN layer can decrease the work function. Thus this study quantifies role of various factors in TiN work function tuning; it also reproduces the thickness varied TiN work function modulation in single thickness TiN thus reducing the burden of complex integration and gate stack etch; and finally it shows that in a low thermal budget flow, it is more effective to achieve higher work function.
    • A Workflow for Simulation and Visualization Of Seismic Wave Propagation Using SeisSol, VisIt and Avizo

      Passone, Luca (2011-08)
      Ground motion estimation and subsurface exploration are main research areas in computational seismology, they are fundamental for implementing earthquake engineering requirements and for modern subsurface reservoir assessment. In this study we propose a workflow for discretizing, simulating and visualizing near source ground motion due to earthquake rupture. For data generation we use an elastic wave equation solver called SeisSol based on the Discontinuous Galerkin formulation with Arbitrary high-order DERivatives (ADER-DG). SeisSol is capable of highly accurate treatment of any earthquake source characterization, occurring on geometrically complex fault systems embedded in geologically complicated earth structures. We then visualize the results with two tools: VisIt (“a free interactive parallel visualization and graphical analysis tool for viewing scientific data”) and Avizo (“The 3D Analysis Software for Scientific and Industrial data”). We investigate each approach, include our experiences from model generation to visualization in highly immersive environments and conclude with a set of general recommendations for earthquake visualization.