Volume 12, Issue 1, August 2014

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Volume 12 Issue 1 August 2014 interactive pdf

https://doi.org/10.33697/ajur.2014.001

Design Techniques for the DNA Cubic-Lattice

Tyler Hotte and Miranda LaRocque

A Student Approach to a Mathematical Simulation of a Racing Electric Vehicle

Fernando Daniel León-Cázares and Daniel Xoconostle-Luna

Proteomic Study of Ribosomal Proteins from Escherichia coli, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Bos taurus, Gallus gallus, and Oncorhynchus tshawytscha: Application in a Teaching Laboratory Setting

Yoshihiro Miura, Eric Yeager, James A. MacKenzie, and Kestutis Bendinskas

A Cellular Automaton Model for Traffic Flow -Investigating the Effect of Turning

Tracy Finner and Matthew A. Beauregard

On Deflection of Potentially Dangerous Asteroids

Josh Fixelle and Mikhail Kagan

 

August 2014 articles (full details and links):

1) 

Design Techniques for the DNA Cubic-Lattice

https://doi.org/10.33697/ajur.2014.002

Tyler Hotte and Miranda LaRocque

Saint Michael’s College, One Winooski Park, Colchester, VT 05439 USA

Link to PDF  Link to Supplemental Information

Abstract: We use the Watson-Crick properties of DNA and the principles of graph theory to construct origami folding designs for self-assembling cubic lattices.  Our objective is a mathematical design strategy that can be expanded systematically to any size cubic lattice.  This design consists of threading a scaffolding strand of DNA through the lattice that is secured in place by short staple strands of DNA.  We first add augmenting edges to the cubic lattice to enable a single scaffolding strand threading.   We then thread the scaffolding strand through the augmented cube in a way that minimizes the number of different vertex configurations in the structure.

Key Words: Watson-Crick, DNA Self-Assembly, Origami folding, Cubic Lattice, Scaffolding Strand, Threading, Staple Strands

Student Authors’ Bios: Miranda LaRocque graduated from Saint Michael’s College with a BS degree in Mathematics in May 2014. She is currently working as an Actuarial Systems Analyst at National Life Group, a life insurance company in Montpelier, Vermont.
Tyler Hotte graduated from the Saint Michael’s College and the University of Vermont in May 2014 with a BS degree in Mechanical Engineering (minor in math). He is currently living in Burlington, VT and works as a Timber Framer for Vermont Frames in Starksboro, VT.

Press Summary: DNA nanostructures are nanoscale structures made of self-assembling DNA, which can be used for biomolecular computing, targeted drug delivery, and biosensors. We use the Watson-Crick properties of DNA and the principles of graph theory to construct origami folding designs for a cubic lattice. Our methods involve a single scaffolding strand of DNA and short staple strands of DNA that secure the scaffolding strand into the shape of a cubic lattice. Our objective was a mathematical design strategy that could be expanded systematically for self-assembly of any size cubic lattice.

2) 

A Student Approach to a Mathematical Simulation of a Racing Electric Vehicle

https://doi.org/10.33697/ajur.2014.003

Fernando Daniel León-Cázares and Daniel Xoconostle-Luna

Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey Campus Estado de México

Link to PDF

Abstract: A program was developed using the software Mathematica to simulate the dynamical behavior of an electric racing car, an electrathon. In conjunction with experimental data it is focused to allow the Borregos-CEM Racing Team decide which settings have to be adjusted in order to increase the velocity of the racing car while decreasing its energy consumption, i.e. the current demanded to the batteries.

Keywords: Model, electric, racing, vehicle, dynamic, simulation, Electrathon

Student Authors’ Bios: Fernando León-Cázares is a senior student in the area of mechanical engineering in Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey Campus Estado de México. He was the Electrathon Borregos CEM Racing’s captain for two years and he has participated in a research group in the same institute dealing with the mathematical modeling of a plasma nitriding process. Daniel Xoconostle-Luna is a mechatronics engineering student who began to work full time in 2013.

Press Summary: An Electrathon is a custom built electric vehicle, similar in appearance to a Go-Kart but powered by an electric motor. We developed a mathematical model to simulate the performance of such vehicle under different conditions so that it is possible to predict its velocity, acceleration and energy consumption at any point of any specific track. This allows for the optimization of different parameters of the vehicle to build the best Electrathon possible.

3) 

Proteomic Study of Ribosomal Proteins from Escherichia coli, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Bos taurus, Gallus gallus, and Oncorhynchus tshawytscha: Application in a Teaching Laboratory Setting

https://doi.org/10.33697/ajur.2014.004

Yoshihiro Miura1,2, Eric Yeager2, James A. MacKenzie2, Kestutis Bendinskas1*

1Department of Chemistry and 2Department of Biological Sciences, SUNY-Oswego

Link to PDF  Link to Supplemental Information

Abstract: Ribosomes are central to protein synthesis and our understanding of ribosomes has advanced antibiotics research. The proteomic study of ribosomes presented here utilizes a combination of differential centrifugation and matrix assisted laser desorption/ionization – time of flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) to analyze ribosomes from various species in a teaching laboratory setting. Five biologically varied species were used: Escherichia coli (bacteria), Saccharomyces cerevisiae (yeast), Bos taurus (cow), Gallus gallus (chicken), and Oncorhynchus tshawytscha (Chinook salmon). Samples were lysed, ribosomes were isolated via ultracentrifugation using a discontinuous sucrose gradient and the individual protein subunits were separated via sodium dodecyl sulfate polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Tryptic digest and MALDI-TOF MS were then conducted on fifteen bands excised from the gel, and the mass spectra of both the whole protein sample and peptides were analyzed. Five out of these fifteen bands were positively identified as various ribosomal proteins, with two uncertain identifications. Additionally, three of the five positively identified proteins that travelled the same distance on the gel were determined to be orthologous. Finally, a class of 14 Biochemistry II students utilized these protocols, identified 3 ribosomal proteins and provided their evaluations of the ultracentrifugation-proteomics teaching laboratory.

Key Words: Proteomics, MALDI-TOF MS, ultracentrifugation, ribosomes, teaching laboratory

Student Authors’ Bios: Yoshihiro Miura graduated from SUNY Oswego in December 2012 with a BS in Biochemistry and Biology. He chose to get his D.P.T. degree at Columbia University, NYC, New York.

Eric Yeager graduated from the State University of New York (SUNY) at Oswego in May, 2010 with a BS degree in Zoology (minor in Chemistry). He is currently living in Ithaca, NY, while attending the New York State College of Veterinary Medicine at Cornell University pursuing his Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine (DVM).

Press Summary: Ribosomes are central to protein synthesis and our understanding of ribosomes has advanced antibiotics research. We purified ribosomes and then ribosomal proteins and identified some of those proteins in five species: bacteria, yeast, salmon, chicken, and cow. We taught these advanced techniques to a class of biochemistry students. We suggest that other biochemists could use our protocols for teaching ultracentrifugation and proteomics in their teaching laboratories.

4) 

A Cellular Automaton Model for Traffic Flow -Investigating the Effect of Turning

https://doi.org/10.33697/ajur.2014.005

Tracy Finner1 & Matthew A. Beauregard2

1 Department of Mathematics, University of Arizona, AZ

2 Department of Mathematics, Baylor University, Waco, TX

Link to PDF 

Abstract: A cellular automaton model is proposed, modeling vehicular traffic flow on a two dimensional lattice in which the vehicles turn at an intersection with a given probability. It is shown that the introduction of turning reduces the long-term average velocity, and can be predicted by a power law depending on the probability of a vehicle turning and the density of cars. The reduction in speed decreases rapidly once the light cycle length surpasses a certain threshold, the value of which can be predicted from the observed power law.

Keywords: cellular automaton, traffic flow, traffic light strategy, turning, dynamical systems, power law

Student Authors’ Bios:

Tracy Finner worked on this project during her senior year (2010-2011) at the University of Arizona. She finished her M.Sc. in industrial engineering in the spring of 2014. She is now an Industrial Engineer at Raytheon.

Press Summary: “Traffic flow models are central to urban planners and developers.  In this paper, a traffic flow model is proposed that models the interaction between individual vehicles and subsequent driver behavior to the traffic light system.  The model is then used to develop empirical evidence for a statistical correlation between the density of vehicles, frequency of turning vehicles, and the timing of the traffic signal.”

5) 

On Deflection of Potentially Dangerous Asteroids

https://doi.org/10.33697/ajur.2014.006

Josh Fixelle and Mikhail Kagan

Department of Science and Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University, Abington, 1600 Woodland Road, Abington, PA 19116, USA

Link to PDF 

Abstract: As has been widely discussed recently, our planet may become a target for asteroids. We consider several scenarios proposed to prevent asteroid collisions with Earth. The asteroid 99942 Apophis is considered as a typical representative. Among others, the recent “gravitational tractor” scenario is discussed. For a simplistic toy-model we obtain estimates for both the mass of the tractor and the amount of fuel required to tow a potentially dangerous asteroid off-course so as to avoid a collision with the Earth. In addition, we analyze two more scenarios titled “sling-shot” and “bumping”, and comment on their relative efficiency compared to the ‘towing” scenario. Based on the analysis, the bumping scenario looks most promising.

KeyWords: Near-Earh Objects, 99942 Apophis, Asteroid Deflection, Gravitational Tractor, “Bumping” Scenario, “Sling-shot” Scenario

Student Authors’ Bios: Joshua Fixelle graduated from the Pennsylvania State University in December, 2013 with BS degrees in Astronomy & Astrophysics and Engineering Science & Mechanics (minors in Mathematics and Physics). He is currently living in Evanston, IL, while attending Northwestern University pursuing his Doctorate in Astrophysics (PhD).

Press Summary: As has been widely discussed recently, our planet may become a target for asteroids (the asteroid 99942 Apophis is considered as a typical representative). We considered several scenarios proposed to prevent asteroid collisions with Earth, including the “gravitational tractor”, “sling-shot”, and “bumping” scenarios. We analyzed and compared the scenarios in regards to their relative efficiency compared to the “gravitational tractor”, and concluded that the bumping scenario looks most promising.

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