Publications by authors named "Christophe Lecomte"

7 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Rhizosphere Bacterial Networks, but Not Diversity, Are Impacted by Pea-Wheat Intercropping.

Front Microbiol 2021 28;12:674556. Epub 2021 May 28.

Agroécologie, AgroSup Dijon, INRAE, Université de Bourgogne - Université de Bourgogne Franche-Comté, Dijon, France.

Plant-plant associations, notably cereal-legume intercropping, have been proposed in agroecology to better value resources and thus reduce the use of chemical inputs in agriculture. Wheat-pea intercropping allows to decreasing the use of nitrogen fertilization through ecological processes such as niche complementarity and facilitation. Rhizosphere microbial communities may account for these processes, since they play a major role in biogeochemical cycles and impact plant nutrition. Still, knowledge on the effect of intecropping on the rhizosphere microbiota remains scarce. Especially, it is an open question whether rhizosphere microbial communities in cereal-legume intercropping are the sum or not of the microbiota of each plant species cultivated in sole cropping. In the present study, we assessed the impact of wheat and pea in IC on the diversity and structure of their respective rhizosphere microbiota. For this purpose, several cultivars of wheat and pea were cultivated in sole and intercropping. Roots of wheat and pea were collected separately in intercropping for microbiota analyses to allow deciphering the effect of IC on the bacterial community of each plant species/cultivar tested. Our data confirmed the well-known specificity of the rhizosphere effect and further stress the differentiation of bacterial communities between pea genotypes (Hr and hr). As regards the intercropping effect, diversity and structure of the rhizosphere microbiota were comparable to sole cropping. However, a specific co-occurrence pattern in each crop rhizosphere due to intercropping was revealed through network analysis. Bacterial co-occurrence network of wheat rhizosphere in IC was dominated by OTUs belonging to Alphaproteobacteria, Bacteroidetes and Gammaproteobacteria. We also evidenced a common network found in both rhizosphere under IC, indicating the interaction between the plant species; this common network was dominated by Acidobacteria, Alphaproteobacteria, and Bacteroidetes, with three OTUs belonging to Acidobacteria, Betaproteobacteria and Chloroflexi that were identified as keystone taxa. These findings indicate more complex rhizosphere bacterial networks in intercropping. Possible implications of these conclusions are discussed in relation with the functioning of rhizosphere microbiota in intercropping accounting for its beneficial effects.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fmicb.2021.674556DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8195745PMC
May 2021

Variable stiffness foot design and validation.

J Biomech 2021 06 14;122:110440. Epub 2021 Apr 14.

Faculty of Industrial Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Computer Science, School of Engineering and Natural Sciences, University of Iceland, Reykjavík, Iceland.

Energy storing and returning prosthetic feet are commonly prescribed. Research has demonstrated advantages to use these types of prosthetic feet. However, their stiffness in the sagittal plane is fixed and cannot adapt to different walking tasks and user preference. In this paper, we propose a novel prosthetic foot design capable of modulating its stiffness in the sagittal plane. The Variable Stiffness Ankle unit (VSA) is mounted on a commercially available prosthetic foot. The stiffness of the foot is adjusted with a lightweight servo motor controlled wirelessly. The stiffness change is accomplished by moving the supports points on the glass fiber leaf spring of the VSA ankle unit. We described the design and characterized changes in ankle stiffness using a mechanical test bench. A novel method was used to capture mechanical test data using a six degree of freedom load cell, allowing us to contrast mechanical and biomechanical data. A transtibial unilateral amputee performed level ground walking on an instrumented treadmill. The VSA prosthetic foot exhibited ankle stiffness change in the mechanical test bench. Ankle stiffness changes were also confirmed during the biomechanical analysis. Future work will involve additional subjects. The VSA prosthetic foot could improve user satisfaction and help prosthetist to fine tune prosthetic feet during fittings.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jbiomech.2021.110440DOI Listing
June 2021

Speed Adaptable Prosthetic Foot: Concept Description, Prototyping and Initial User Testing.

IEEE Trans Neural Syst Rehabil Eng 2020 12 28;28(12):2978-2986. Epub 2021 Jan 28.

This article presents a novel design of a prosthetic foot that features adaptable stiffness that changes according to the speed of ankle motion. The motivation is the natural graduation in stiffness of a biological ankle over a range of ambulation tasks. The device stiffness depends on rate of movement, ranging from a dissipating support at very slow walking speed, to efficient energy storage and return at normal walking speed. The objective here is to design a prosthetic foot that provides a compliant support for slow ambulation, without sacrificing the spring-like energy return beneficial in normal walking. The design is a modification of a commercially available foot and employs material properties to provide a change in stiffness. The velocity dependent properties of a non-Newtonian working fluid provide the rate adaptability. Material properties of components allow for a geometry shift that results in a coupling action, affecting the stiffness of the overall system. The function of an adaptive coupling was tested in linear motion. A prototype prosthetic foot was built, and the speed dependent stiffness measured mechanically. Furthermore, the prototype was tested by a user and body kinematics measured in gait analysis for varying walking speed, comparing the prototype to the original foot model (non-modified). Mechanical evaluation of stiffness shows increase in stiffness of about 60% over the test range and 10% increase between slow and normal walking speed in user testing.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/TNSRE.2020.3036329DOI Listing
December 2020

Functional joint center of prosthetic feet during level ground and incline walking.

Med Eng Phys 2020 07 13;81:13-21. Epub 2020 May 13.

Faculty of Industrial Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Computer Science, School of Engineering and Natural Sciences, University of Iceland, Reykjavík, Iceland.

Energy storage and returning prosthetic feet do not provide a well-defined articulation point compared to the human ankle. Calculation of user relevant parameters, such as ankle power, requires such a joint center point when using traditional mechanical models. However, shortcomings of current calculation methods result in some errors. The aim of this case study was to compare conventional ankle joint calculations to a functional joint center (FJC) using data collected on a roll-over test machine and in a motion lab during dissimilar walking tasks. Three prosthetic feet were evaluated on a roll-over test machine. Then, two trans-tibial amputees were each fitted with the same three prosthetic feet matching their weight and activity category. Kinematic data were collected during walking on level ground, as well as up and down a slope. The FJC during the stance phase of gait was calculated for each test method and compared with outcomes using conventional methods. The location of the FJC was generally anterior and inferior to the estimated anatomical joint position. Importantly, the FJC location varied for the different prosthetic feet and was task dependent as per the three gait conditions. This was reflected in different ankle angles and moments of FJC calculations compared to conventional methods for level ground walking. Differences in the calculated FJC between conditions represented the variations in prosthetic foot deformation, and explained how this parameter is influenced by the prosthetic's stiffness. For level ground walking, calculated FJC location between human subject testing and machine evaluation were strongly correlated. Both stiffness and task dependent demands of the prosthetic foot should be considered during testing. The FJC of elastic ankles can serve as a parameter for characterization and differentiation between various prosthetic foot designs and be an important parameter for prosthetic foot designers to consider. As the position of the FJC is dependent on the design and task, it is a more informative measure of the prosthetic foot's response to the user's needs. Furthermore, prosthetists could use this metric in clinical practice to better appreciate amputee feedback and perception. FJC provides an alternative center during calculation of ankle power using standard methods.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.medengphy.2020.04.011DOI Listing
July 2020

Methods for Describing and Characterizing the Mechanical Behavior of Running-Specific Prosthetic Feet.

IEEE Int Conf Rehabil Robot 2019 06;2019:892-898

Current methods for describing and characterizing the mechanical behavior of running-specific prosthetic feet are incomplete, and this has limited our understanding of how design parameters impact athlete performance. Deflections induced by most ground reaction forces consist of vertical, horizontal, and angular components, but previous work has focused only on the vertical component. Furthermore, the deflection depends heavily on the direction of the force, which changes throughout stance phase of running. In this paper, we introduce several methods that can be used to more precisely describe and characterize the mechanics of running-specific prosthetic feet. We use a custom finite element model to simulate these methods, and validate them with a series of tests using a prototype foot in a universal testing machine.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/ICORR.2019.8779557DOI Listing
June 2019

A frequency averaging framework for the solution of complex dynamic systems.

Proc Math Phys Eng Sci 2014 Jun;470(2166):20130743

Associate Member, Southampton Statistical Sciences Research Institute , University of Southampton , Southampton, UK.

A frequency averaging framework is proposed for the solution of complex linear dynamic systems. It is remarkable that, while the mid-frequency region is usually very challenging, a smooth transition from low- through mid- and high-frequency ranges is possible and all ranges can now be considered in a single framework. An interpretation of the frequency averaging in the time domain is presented and it is explained that the average may be evaluated very efficiently in terms of system solutions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rspa.2013.0743DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4042715PMC
June 2014

Zero and root loci of disturbed spring-mass systems.

Proc Math Phys Eng Sci 2014 Apr;470(2164):20130751

Southampton Statistical Sciences Research Institute, University of Southampton, Southampton, UK.

Models consisting of chains of particles that are coupled to their neighbours appear in many applications in physics or engineering, such as in the study of dynamics of mono-atomic and multi-atomic lattices, the resonances of crystals with impurities and the response of damaged bladed discs. Analytical properties of the dynamic responses of such disturbed chains of identical springs and masses are presented, including when damping is present. Several remarkable properties in the location of the resonances (poles) and anti-resonances (zeros) of the displacements in the frequency domain are presented and proved. In particular, it is shown that there exists an elliptical region in the frequency-disturbance magnitude plane from which zeros are excluded and the discrete values of the frequency and disturbance at which double poles occur are identified. A particular focus is on a local disturbance, such as when a spring or damper is modified at or between the first and last masses. It is demonstrated how, notably through normalization, the techniques and results of the paper apply to a broad category of more complex systems in physics, chemistry and engineering.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rspa.2013.0751DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3928960PMC
April 2014