Researchers Have Created a Perovskite X-ray Detector for Medical Imaging Applications

Image taken from ScienceDirect.com

Researchers from the Shenzhen Institute of Advanced Technology (SIAT) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Central China Normal University have developed a high-performance perovskite X-ray detector, designed to enhance medical imaging. Published in Nature Communications, the study introduces a direct-conversion X-ray detector that integrates a thick perovskite film with a CMOS pixel array, offering improved spatial resolution and lower radiation doses.

Traditional semiconductor materials used in X-ray imaging, like silicon and cadmium zinc telluride, often suffer from low X-ray absorption efficiency or high costs. The newly developed perovskite detector addresses these issues by using a CsPbBr3 perovskite film, which demonstrates high detection sensitivity and a significantly lower dose detection limit.

The detector achieves excellent spatial resolution and has been successfully tested in 2D and 3D CT imaging, even at high speeds of 300 frames per second. This advancement indicates a promising future for medical imaging technologies, making X-ray procedures safer and more effective.

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RadParts, a TTG Imaging Solutions Company, is the world’s largest independent distributor of OEM replacement parts. We specialize in low-cost parts for repairing linear accelerators and radiation equipment. Our mission is to provide high-quality, user-friendly, low-cost components and support for linear accelerators and radiation equipment. Contact RadParts at 877-704-3838 to learn more.

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com

Home Equity Statistics

Home equity is a hot topic lately, especially since home prices have escalated recently. In the second quarter of 2022, the average level of equity for homeowners with mortgages reached almost $300,000. Over the past five years, home equity has been skyrocketing, spurred into overdrive by the pandemic. 

According to the National Association of Realtors, in March 2020, the median price of an existing home in the United States was $280,000, and by October 2022, it jumped to $379,000. 

Three ways to increase your home equity: 

  • Making consistent monthly mortgage payments
  • Completing home renovations
  • Increasing neighborhood or city value

Just as equity can rise, it can lower as well; this is called “negative equity.” This happens when the homeowner owes more on their mortgage than the home is worth. Negative equity is not an issue for most people, thanks to the spike in home values, but that doesn’t mean it won’t be a factor when the housing market cools down. 

Some home equity statistics: 

  • HELOC and home equity loans jumped by 47 percent between January and May of 2022.
  • Hawaii had the highest home equity spike in 2022, at an average of $130,000.
  • In the third quarter of 2022, home equity dropped by $1.3 trillion.
  • Since March 2020, the average homeowner with a mortgage has gained $92,000.
  • The home values throughout the US’s 50 biggest metro areas have increased between 19 and 66 percent.
  • Defaulted mortgages accounted for less than 500,000 homes as of September 2022.

Home equity is an attractive benefit of homeownership. Making monthly mortgage payments are a better alternative than paying a landlord rent every month, as a mortgage allows you to build wealth. 

Are you interested in building wealth through a home mortgage? You’ve come to the right place; contact EB Mortgage today to learn how we can help you tomorrow.

EB Mortgage is a locally owned mortgage company with experts in new home purchase, refinancing, and commercial loans. Our wholesale rates can’t be beaten. We offer more products, more options, and more solutions. Our “3C” Process is simple: complete our pre-approval request, consider options based on your requirements, and choose the offer that suits your needs best. Call us or e-mail us today!  

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: https://www.cpsmi.com/

Key Criteria for Hiring Home Contractors

When it comes to home renovations, it’s imperative to hire a professional team you trust. Since remodeling is not necessarily within many homeowners’ skill sets, understanding how to hire the right company may seem daunting. 

If your project is extensive, hiring a general contractor will be your best bet, as they will lead a team of electricians, carpenters, plumbers, etc., and ensure that the project runs efficiently and smoothly.

Try to find contractors who are highly recommended by neighbors, friends, and online groups. Make sure you meet with more than one company to find the most competitive bid. Bear in mind the lowest bidder may not necessarily be suitable for your needs; reference their experience, timeline, and the quality of materials used.  

General contractors keep subcontractors on schedule, ensure they meet deadlines, and provide high-quality work. Before hiring a contractor, gain insight by asking them questions about their licensing, past experience, and more. 

Insurance and Licensing
Subcontractors and contractors should both be licensed and insured. Depending on where the property is, there might be clear requirements for contractors. All relevant licensing and insurance documents are subject to approval before work can begin. 

References
Satisfied customers are typically more than happy to discuss their experiences with potential new clients, especially in the remodeling world. Many contractors can provide a short list of references allowing new clients to familiarize themselves with what to expect. The contractor should also be able to show a portfolio of their previous work.

Labor Capacity
General contractors should be able to hire subcontractors with ease. With recent labor shortages, it is important to ensure your project will be completed in a timely manner. Subcontractor availability is imperative for a successful project. 

Material Access
Supply chain shortages and inflation have severely impacted the availability and cost of many remodeling materials. Experienced contractors will be able to inform clients about which products are behind and how to navigate the budget based on any issues incurred. Lead times are essential for ensuring your project is completed on time. 

Need a home contractor for a remodeling job? Give us a call for prompt, honest, and high-quality craftsmanship.

JFC Remodeling is committed to providing top-quality home reconstruction services to clients throughout Livingston County. With over 30 years of experience in the industry, our licensed contractors create unique, individualized, and polished renovations. Whether the site requires improvement, repair, or is a new construction, you can trust our experts to deliver remarkable results. Call or email us to learn more.

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: https://www.cpsmi.com/

12 Signs of a Rodent Infestation

The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) suggests homeowners this winter might notice an increase in rodent activity due to the forecasted wet weather conditions this season.  

Cindy Mannes, Vice President of Public Affairs for NPMA said, “Although it may seem like pest activity dies down during the fall and winter, homeowners need to be on the lookout for signs of stealthy rodents like mice and rats, and take preventative measures to avoid encounters. Mice and rats can spread dangerous diseases, contaminate food, trigger allergy symptoms, and even bring fleas, ticks, and lice into homes. Rodents are also known to damage properties by chewing through drywall insulation, electrical wires, and even car wiring. Don’t forget to look under the hood!” 

Be on the lookout for these twelve signs of rodent activity: 

  1. Gnaw Marks: Rodents love to chew…through almost anything. They can seriously damage plastic and lead pipes, wires, wood, cardboard, baseboards, and more. Their constant chewing can spark water leaks, fires, and more. 
  1. Droppings: Easy to identify, and one of the most common signs of an infestation is rodent feces. Small pellets are often left behind where food is stored or where nesting material is tucked away. Look in pantries, cabinets, cardboard boxes, baseboards, and wall beams. When cleaning rodent droppings, always wear gloves and a mask. 
  1. Noises: If you hear scratching, gnawing noises, scampering, or the rolling sound of round objects such as nuts or seeds, these are telltale signs of a rodent within the walls, attic, or ceiling.
  1. Marks: Also known as rub tracks or grease marks, rodents usually leave dark dirt (grease) marks along walls, floorboards, and in and out of small entry or exit holes. This grime is left behind from the rodent’s oily fur. Keep an eye out for tiny rodent footprints in areas with a large amount of dust or surfaces they can easily run across, such as beams. 
  2. Car Alarm: If your car alarm is activated either in the garage while locked or shortly after you drive away from home (while parked), check under your vehicle’s hood for any signs of rodents. These pests like to nest in the fabric protecting the battery or chew wires throughout the hood. 
  1. Nests: House mice really enjoy constructing their nests with shredded paper products, packing materials, insulation, fabrics, cotton, and such. Obvious signs of nesting include small rips of paper appearing seemingly out of nowhere. 
  1. Food storage: Rodents tend to stockpile food for the winter, and anything goes. Food such as dog or cat kibble, nuts, seeds, etc., found in piles in an unusual area, such as an inconspicuous drawer or cabinet, are surefire ways to confirm rodents are in the house. 
  1. Rodent Spotting: If you see a rodent of any kind in your house (or even outside near your home, for that matter), chances are, there are more. Female house mice can give birth to half a dozen babies every three weeks, which adds up to roughly 35 mice per year. 
  1. Allergies: A sudden onslaught of strange allergic reactions might actually be caused by rodent fur, dander, or droppings. A pest-free home can help reduce allergies. 
  1. Holes: Check the perimeter of your house for tiny holes; these are usually the entry and exit points for rodents. Rodents can fit through openings as small as a dime.
  1. Odor: Rodents stink, and the musky odor can linger if not handled properly. Dead rodents are especially pungent, so if you smell something rotting, there is probably more than one.
  1. Strange Pet Behavior: If you have other pets, such as a dog or cat, who are acting unusual in a specific area of the home, it could be due to rodents. 

If you suspect you have rodents in your home or business, contact the experts at Northern Pest asap! Don’t hesitate to call; we can help clear your infestation safely, effectively, and professionally.

Our family is serving yours! At Northern Pest, we are licensed and insured to provide insect and wildlife pest control. Our crew has the expertise to track wildlife entry points and remove pests of all kinds, including our licensed builders, who can make any of the necessary repairs caused by wildlife. Northern Pest is a member of the MDAT and the NWCOA. We are certified by the IICRC to offer professional mold mitigation services caused by animal damage. At Northern Pest, we do it all! Call or e-mail us today. 

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: https://www.cpsmi.com/

What is Scapholunate Advanced Collapse?

The bands of connective tissue that join your bones, joints, and organs are called ligaments. There are over 900 ligaments in your body. Some of their purposes include: 

  • Facilitating proper joint movement
  • Preventing twisting joints
  • Ensuring bones stay intact
  • Minimize dislocating bones
  • Creating stabilized muscles and joints
  • Increasing joint strength

Scapholunate Advanced Collapse (SLAC Wrist) affects the wrist and occurs when damage or a tear to the scapholunate ligament results in pain or arthritis. SLAC Wrist can result from overworking or force on the wrist, such as falling onto an outstretched hand. 

The most common symptoms of SLAC Wrist are: 

  • Inability to put weight on your wrist 
  • Painful sensation
  • Weak grip 
  • Low range of motion 
  • Stiffness 
  • Tenderness

If a SLAC Wrist is not immediately treated, arthritis can eventually form in the joint. Symptoms of arthritis might also include swelling, bone spurs, grinding, popping, or cracking. 

Treatments for SLAC Wrist include: 

  • Anti-inflammatory medication 
  • Cortisone injection
  • Identifying and stopping all aggravating activity
  • Physical therapy
  • Surgical options such as SLAC reconstruction or total wrist arthrodesis

SLAC Wrist can be debilitating yet treatable. Physical therapy might be recommended following surgery if required. 

Do you think SLAC Wrist affects you or someone in your family? Contact the experts at MI Hand & Wrist to learn how we can help provide relief. 

Michigan Hand & Wrist was founded in 2001 with the mission to provide the highest-quality care for patients seeking surgical or non-surgical hand or upper extremity relief. Our goal is to exhaust all non-operative measures before discussing or moving on to surgical interventions. We offer on-site physical therapy from therapists committed to improving your quality of life. Our individualized treatments are modern, progressive, and exceptional. Call us at 248-596-0412 for further questions. 

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems:https://www.cpsmi.com/

Novel 4D Printing Emerges for Breast Cancer Treatment

Breast cancer is the second most common cancer worldwide, affecting approximately 7.8 million women in the past seven years. Current 3D breast cancer treatment focuses on treatment, tissue regeneration, and physical recovery. From prosthetics to drug-loaded implants, challenges persist. With a novel 4D technology, complexity and customization combine to improve breast cancer management. 

Generally, 3D treatments are well-established due to many advantages, such as rapid prototyping, ease of accessibility, structural control, and cost-effectiveness. It also requires low energy, so from an environmental perspective, 3D treatments are eco-friendly, reduce waste production, and do not involve chemicals. There are some hurdles when it comes to 3D treatments, however. Some of these include build size, post-processing, and lack of regulation. 

When it comes to revolutionizing the standard treatment for breast cancer, 3D printing has shown a significant impact when it comes to diagnosis, treatment, and aesthetic outcomes. 

To help surgeons plan and make decisions, breast and tumor prototypes are used for diagnostic tasks, surgery training, preoperative planning, treatment optimization, and drug screening. These prosthetic models mimic patient anatomy. The 3D models, from a practical perspective, were created to localize tumors and provide physical models for resection guidance. 

With 4D treatments, the advantages and disadvantages of 3D technology are present, but 4D can offer a higher level of complexity and customization features. Combined with programmed functionalities, the dynamic abilities of 4D treatments are advantageous for breast cancer treatment. 

Some challenges of 4D treatment include material availability, technical aspects, and the design process. New materials and improved biocompatibility should be the primary focus when it comes to printability. 

Acceletronics is an industry leader in delivering the best equipment performance and service reliability from CT Scanners and Linear Accelerators across all major brands and models. Call 610-524-3300 to learn more.

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: https://www.cpsmi.com/ 

What is a Panelboard, Switchboard, and Switchgear?

A building’s electrical system is a complex and critical infrastructure few know much about. Most people take advantage of flipping a switch and receiving automated light or functionality from a machine without much consideration of how it occurs. This blog introduces a few major products that make it all possible: panelboards, switchboards, and switchgear.  

Panelboards

Panelboards are usually found in commercial buildings due to their large size and the amount of power they can handle. They are designed for single-phase or three-phase applications, depending on your needs. The primary function of a panelboard is to distribute power from the source to other devices in your building or facility through breakers designed for specific voltages ranging from 120 to 600 volts or higher, depending on your location. They are the most common circuit breaker box type and are always mounted to a wall. They are used to distribute power to an entire building or other areas. Panelboard covers protect these devices from damage by keeping them dry and clean while providing easy access for maintenance and repair.

Switchboards

Switchboards are typically used where a large amount of equipment requires a lot of power to operate. These devices are designed to control the flow of electricity through multiple breakers without manually closing each one after every use. Like panelboards, switchboards are usually rated for up to 600 volts, but they can manage higher currents, up to 5,000 amps. Switchboards are floor mounted and covered with a panel to provide protection and easy access for maintenance and repair.

Switchgear

Switchgears are used on larger projects, such as factories or warehouses, where there is a need for more than one circuit breaker or fuse within a single enclosure due to increased demand for power or space limitations. This type of equipment is also used in residential homes to automatically shut down the electrical system in the event of a short circuit or other malfunction. Switchgear is for individual components and is the largest of the three. It can be rated for up to 38 kV and run a current of up to 6,000 amps.

Overcurrent protective devices (OCPDs) are devices that send power from the source to the end user. These are sometimes simple devices like light bulbs, or sometimes they’re massive systems that run entire buildings. The three main options for organizing, housing, and utilizing OCPDs are panelboards, switchboards, and switchgear. All three allow for easy access to your power needs in one way or another, but each has its pros and cons that you should consider.

At J&P Electric, we specialize in large industrial electrical equipment, from new surplus to hard to find/reconditioned to like new. Not sure we have what you need? Call us and find out!

J&P Electrical is a full-service electrical supply company. At J&P, we source contractors, end-users, and supply houses with new surplus, quality reconditioned, and obsolete electrical equipment. We also purchase a wide range of heavy industrial electrical equipment such as bus plugs, bus duct, transformers, circuit breakers, fuses, and switchboards. Call us at 877-844-5514 for assistance.  

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: https://www.cpsmi.com/

Small Rural School Districts and Disadvantaged Communities Face Unfair Levies and School Bonds

The Wahkiakum school district in southwest Washington argues that the levying system leaves rural school children with crumbling, outdated buildings. The small community of about 2,000 residents has appealed to the states Supreme Court and is waiting for the attorney general’s office to respond.

In 2012, the state Supreme Court favored the McLeary case, in which Washington state was found to be underfunding K-12 schools. After years of litigation, the state’s highest court ruled that Washington needed to pay nearly $2 billion to fund teacher salaries rather than rely on local levies.

Today, the same argument is applied to school bonds. School bonds provide funding for building new schools, attaining property, and renovating and repairing facilities and systems within buildings. In contrast, levy dollars pay for educational programs and day-to-day operations such as teachers, support staff, classroom supplies, technology, extracurricular activities, transportation, utilities, and insurance. 

Washington School Superintendent of Public Instruction, Chris Reykdal, thinks the way schools are funded needs to change. Bigger, wealthier school districts usually don’t have difficulty in passing a bond vote as school construction bonds in property-rich communities cost minimally on every $1,000 of assessed property value for each taxpayer. However, in rural areas with less valuable property, bonds are much more expensive for individual households, making them harder to pass.

Reykdal further explains that without bond approval, districts can’t qualify for state match funding. Like most other states throughout the U.S., school districts are initially funded by property taxes based on the local tax base. Constituents vote on the applied tax rate, and the money ultimately comes in levies. That money is then supplemented by state aid.

Experts said that property tax has historically been used for school budgets because they are stable and less likely to fluctuate with the economy, unlike other revenue, like income and sales taxes. Additionally, voters usually like holding local control over neighborhood institutions.

Washington is not the only state suffering from an unbalanced levying and construction bonding system. While every state varies within its specific guidelines for school funding, more than half of states have per-pupil funding levels below the national average. Sometimes, even within the same district, students face a disparity.

Luckily, a lot of attention is being drawn to closing America’s education disparity gaps. The Century Foundation (TCF) has created a report that estimates what is needed to provide each child in America the opportunity to succeed.

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At Construction Bonding Specialists, we work with new and experienced contractors to find the most satisfactory bond solutions. As a distinct surety-bond-only agency with decades of bonding experience, we work to discover surety solutions for all types of cases ranging from ordinary to challenging. Call us at 248-349-6227 to learn more.

Written by the digital marketing team at Creative Programs & Systems: https://www.cpsmi.com/

Easy Car Projects for Winter Storage

Do you have a special little sports car that’s tucked away for winter storage? That vintage vehicle that you’ve been working on through the years? If you’re feeling some separation anxiety, have no fear, there are a few things you can do to keep the car in good condition throughout winter.

Dent Inventory
Have you been meaning to fix some of those dents and dings on your car’s exterior? Now is an excellent time to take an inventory of the indentations. Find a reputable dent specialist and schedule an appointment to pop those dings out.

Wash & Polish
When the car is headed to or from storage, hose it down to remove surface scum, then apply some car wash shampoo with a giant sponge. Wipe all moisture off with a microfiber cloth to minimize streaks and water spots, then get some high-quality vehicle wax to buff out the shine.

Interior Clean
Upholstery and odors are two aspects of a vehicle’s interior that often get overlooked. Leather cleaning sprays can be helpful to wipe down the seats, followed by a conditioner to ensure the seats do not crack or dry out. Odors can arise in a vehicle despite your best efforts to keep them out. To remedy this, treat your interior with an odor eliminator, which will chemically alter the molecules in the air.

Fix It
Winter is the ideal time to mend anything you can on the vehicle. Have you been putting off replacing your spark plugs, getting an oil change, flushing your coolant, or more? Now’s the time to get ‘er done.

Looking to get your vehicle in tip-top shape while the winter season lingers on? Drive it into Team CAMC today!

Team CAMC is your Complete Auto Maintenance Center. For over 30 years, we have followed a single guiding principle: we never push or sell services a vehicle doesn’t need. Our team of trained technicians welcomes you like family and discusses all types of oil and fluid changes offered. Critical points are reviewed through a 13-point inspection to ensure your vehicle is ready for the next adventure on the road ahead. Contact us today to schedule the professional service you deserve from a team you trust.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

Brain Tumor Visibility Doubled with New MRI Technique

When compared to existing visualization methods, a new 3D technique with MRI scans doubles the visibility of brain tumors. Since a large number of tumors are discernable, the new process has the potential to make it easier to treat them earlier and at smaller, more manageable stages.

Robert Edelman, M.D., is an inventor, lead author, and clinical professor of radiology. His work was shared in the Science Advances journal. He said, “Our goal is for the new technique – T1RESS – to help thousands of patients by allowing malignant tumors to be detected at an earlier, more curable stage.”

According to the American Brain Tumor Association, 700,000 Americans are living with brain tumors and 16,000 will die this year. The new MRI technique can catch the tiny malignant tumors that often escape notice, potentially saving lives and improving outcomes. 

The hope is that those patients undergoing surgery or radiotherapy will receive better clinical outcomes by making the tumor margins on contrast-enhanced scans more visible.

Edelman and his colleagues studied brain tumors in 54 patients to determine how well T1RESS works. He applied magnetic fields and radio waves used to generate MRI signals differently from existing imaging techniques. The new technique uniquely manipulates brain tissue signals to produce images that offer significantly improved tumor visibility. This application makes T1RESS highly sensitive to the T1 shortening effects of paramagnetic contrast agents, but it also reduces the signal intensity of non-enhancing background issues, both improve tumor visualization.

Experimental results showed that the new technique provided a two-fold improvement over existing MRI methods in regards to the contrast between tumors and normal brain tissue. Edelman compared the visualization to seeing more stars: “There just isn’t enough contrast between the stars and the sunlit sky to make them visible. In the case of brain tumors, T1RESS doubles the contrast between tumors and normal brain, so the tumors are more easily detected. It’s like looking at the stars on a dark night instead of a sunny day,” Edelman said. 

A larger, multi-site trial will need to be performed in order to confirm the findings, but the plan is to apply this technique to both prostate and breast cancers as well. If the benefits are confirmed, widespread use will be as simple as the installation of a specialized software package.

Visit the Science Advances website to read the full journal article. For more information about CT Scanners, Linear Accelerators, and the like, contact Acceletronics today.
 

Acceletronics is an industry leader in delivering the best equipment performance and service reliability from CT Scanners and Linear Accelerators across all major brands and models. Call 610-524-3300 or visit our website: https://www.acceletronics.com.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.