Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Environmental Science : Green Living

Engineering: 3D Printing

I really want one of these! If you can design it in a CAD program you can print it. 3D printer use a type of fast curing plastic, but imagine what you can build if you could if you used a metal alloy.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Environmental Science: Malaria

New breakthrough could finally control the Malaria parasite. You can listen to the NPR story here.

Environmental Sciecne: The Solar Economy

Solar panel maker Solyndra files for bankruptcy.

While this may seem like bad news for the Solar Power industry, it's really a coming of age. Solar power is starting to respond to real world economics. For years, solar panel were seen as to expensive to have, but that is not true any more. Market forces and new technologies have brought the prices down.

You can read about what really brought Solyndra down here: What went wrong at Solyndra?

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Physics and Physical Science: LHC and the Higgs Boson

Years after being predicted, scientist are still looking for the Higgs boson. Sometimes call the "God Particle", the Higgs Boson is thought to be the elementary particle that gives the property of mass to most of the other know particles in the universe. So far scientist have been unsuccessful in finding the Higgs boson and they are running out of places to look.

Read more here: BBC News: Higgs boson range narrows at European collider

Looks like we may need something bigger than the LHC - Large Hadron Collider

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Environmental Science - Toxicology and Plastic

It has been long know that plastics made with a chemical call BPA (Bisphenol A) can have that chemical leach out of the plastic over time. This particular chemical can be recognized by the human body as something similar to the hormone Estrogen. Now a recent study show that even plastics made without BPA run a risk of leaching out chemicals that are similar to the human hormone Estrogen as well.

You may read and listen to the NPR story here: Study: Most Plastics Leach Hormone-Like Chemicals

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Environmental Science: Iowa Flooding and Wetland

Iowa's Rising Flood Risk: Blame Corn and Soybeans?
01/26/11 filed by Kate Wells
With Iowa experiencing heavier rainstorms and rising rivers each year, scientists say it's only a matter of time before the state is hit by yet another major flood. Communities are still recovering from previous disasters, like the ones that befell Cedar Rapids in 2008 and central Iowa in 2010. Environmentalists are trying to lower that risk by conserving land to slow run-off. But as market demand for corn and soybeans increases, there's little hope that conservation will win the battle for Iowa's acres. Iowa Public Radio's Kate Wells reports.

You can download and listen to the whole story here: 3 mins 45 sec Audio Clip

Environmental Science: A tale of two Seeds

Genetic Modified Sugar Beets vs Organics Swiss Chard

farmers in Oregon are struggling with growing organic crops near geneticly engineered sugar beets. The sugar beet are modified with the same gene that resist Roundup herbicide. The organic Swiss Chard is grown to produce seeds that sells to growers that want organically pure produce. The problem cross pollenation.

The chard and the beets are actually the same species. They're all Beta vulgaris, the way black Labradors and golden retrievers are all dogs. So anyone growing these plants for seed has a special concern: windblown pollen.

You can read more of the story here: A Tale of Two Seed Farmers: Organic vs Engineered

You also listen to the audio story as well by following the above link to NPR: All Things Consider.