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  1. We combine computational and experimental methods to study the acid-catalyzed conversion of polyalcohols to provide insights into the selective functionalization and conversion of multi-layered plastic films.

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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 31, 2024
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  4. Monitoring the frictional behavior of rock discontinuities is essential for the identification of potential natural hazards caused by mechanical instability. Active seismic monitoring of changes in transmitted and/or reflected compressional (P) and shear (S) waves has been used as a non-destructive method to assess the degree of damage inside rock and to monitor slip along a discontinuity. The objective of this study is to explore the geophysical response of a saturated rock joint undergoing shear. Laboratory shear tests are conducted on prismatic Indiana limestone specimens. Induced tension fractures resulted in specimens composed of two blocks (152.4 mm  127.0 mm  50.8 mm) with rough contact surfaces. Direct shear experiments were performed inside a metal confinement chamber under an effective normal stress of 2 MPa on water-saturated specimens. During the experiments, the chamber pressure, the total normal load, the shear load and the slip displacement were monitored. During the tests, continuous pulses of P- and S-waves were transmitted through the specimen and the amplitudes of the transmitted and reflected waves were recorded. The paper provides results of the mechanical and geophysical response of saturated joints and compares them with those obtained from similar, but dry, joints. For dry joints, both transmitted and reflected P- and S-waves show a distinct peak wave amplitude prior to shear failure. However, for saturated joints, a distinct peak in amplitude is only observed in both transmitted and reflected S-waves. Transmitted and reflected P-waves, propagated through saturated rock, displayed a continuous decrease and increase in amplitude, respectively, but had a sudden change in the rate of amplitude change that can be taken as a seismic precursor to joint shear failure. 
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  6. Abstract CUPID is a next-generation bolometric experiment aiming at searching for neutrinoless double-beta decay with ∼250 kg of isotopic mass of 100 Mo. It will operate at ∼10 mK in a cryostat currently hosting a similar-scale bolometric array for the CUORE experiment at the Gran Sasso National Laboratory (Italy). CUPID will be based on large-volume scintillating bolometers consisting of 100 Mo-enriched Li 2 MoO 4 crystals, facing thin Ge-wafer-based bolometric light detectors. In the CUPID design, the detector structure is novel and needs to be validated. In particular, the CUORE cryostat presents a high level of mechanical vibrations due to the use of pulse tubes and the effect of vibrations on the detector performance must be investigated. In this paper we report the first test of the CUPID-design bolometric light detectors with NTD-Ge sensors in a dilution refrigerator equipped with a pulse tube in an above-ground lab. Light detectors are characterized in terms of sensitivity, energy resolution, pulse time constants, and noise power spectrum. Despite the challenging noisy environment due to pulse-tube-induced vibrations, we demonstrate that all the four tested light detectors comply with the CUPID goal in terms of intrinsic energy resolution of 100 eV RMS baseline noise. Indeed, we have measured 70–90 eV RMS for the four devices, which show an excellent reproducibility. We have also obtained high energy resolutions at the 356 keV line from a 133 Ba source, as good as Ge semiconductor γ detectors in this energy range. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2024
  7. Abstract An array of twelve 0.28 kg lithium molybdate (LMO) low-temperature bolometers equipped with 16 bolometric Ge light detectors, aiming at optimization of detector structure for CROSS and CUPID double-beta decay experiments, was constructed and tested in a low-background pulse-tube-based cryostat at the Canfranc underground laboratory in Spain. Performance of the scintillating bolometers was studied depending on the size of phonon NTD-Ge sensors glued to both LMO and Ge absorbers, shape of the Ge light detectors (circular vs. square, from two suppliers), in different light collection conditions (with and without reflector, with aluminum coated LMO crystal surface). The scintillating bolometer array was operated over 8 months in the low-background conditions that allowed to probe a very low, μBq/kg, level of the LMO crystals radioactive contamination by 228 Th and 226 Ra. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2024