Arizona Science Arizona Science explores the latest scientific research and technological innovations taking place in Southern Arizona and at the University of Arizona.
Arizona Science

Arizona Science

From Arizona Public Media

Arizona Science explores the latest scientific research and technological innovations taking place in Southern Arizona and at the University of Arizona.

Most Recent Episodes

Episode 195: Earth science and the art of crunching numbers

Regents' professor Hoshin Gupta teaches Hydrology and Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Arizona. Gupta discusses how he's meeting the challenge of data analysis in his Earth Science research, and why he advises students should get comfortable with big data as they begin their careers.

Episode 194: Researching eating disorders with lab mice

University of Arizona neurobiologist Haijiang Cai is studying parts of the brain that govern hunger and emotion, along with anxiety and depression. He says little is known about the brain's connection with eating disorders, and even less is known about its relationship to emotional disorders.

Episode 193: Going global with farming methods

A University of Arizona agriculture scientist is trying to find out why a popular way to grow crops in the United States is not as effective in a part of the world where it is needed most. Jeff Michler is studying conservation agriculture in Zimbabwe. It is a technique that calls for farmers to use mulch and other remains from a previous year's harvest to feed the soil. The method has worked in North America and Brazil for 30 years. But Michler says its ineffectiveness in some sub-Saharan nations in Africa is a mystery.

Episode 192: Seeking knowledge through the use of synthetic biology

Scientists describe synthetic biology as the basics of making things from already existing biological forms, like genetic engineering and building molecules. Synthetic biology is responsible for newly-developed textiles and plant fertilizers. University of Arizona astrobiologist Betül Kacar says synthetic biology could also help develop ideas about life that might be encountered elsewhere in the universe.

Episode 191: Memories of the first moon landing

Bill Hartmann, senior science emeritus at the Tucson-based Planetary Science Institute, assisted legendary University of Arizona astronomer Gerard Kuiper (KY-per) in creating the Rectified Lunar Atlas. Their detailed map of the moon's visible surface proved valuable to NASA's Apollo program that landed the first men on the moon 50 years ago this week.

Episode 190: A better way to build small

University of Arizona Chemical and Environmental Engineering professor Anthony Muscat is investigating how to build material structures in nano-scale. His research could help the semiconductor industry reduce manufacturing costs by developing self-assembling components for computers, cell phone chips, and microscopic medical devices.

Episode 189: Tree ring research tracks the history of the Asian monsoon

Nearly half the world's population is affected by the Asian summer monsoon, but the monsoon has been weakening since the 1940s. Instrumental and observational records go back about 100 years, but University of Arizona tree ring researcher Steven Leavitt has tracked the monsoon's history 450 years into the past to uncover previous trends in rainfall and drought. His study found that the 80-year decline in rainfall is unprecedented, and traced it to the impact of man-made atmospheric pollutants.

Episode 189: Tree ring research tracks the history of the Asian monsoon

Episode 188: Sleep, memory, language, and Down syndrome

University of Arizona psychology professor Jamie Edgin's work provided the first empirical evidence suggesting poor sleep might limit how well children with Down syndrome learn to communicate. Edgin is now expanding her sleep research to include children born premature and those at risk for autism.

Episode 187: New ways to eliminate dangerous chemicals

UA professor of chemical and environmental engineering Reyes Sierra-Alvarez studies types of chemicals that pose a danger to Arizona water consumers. She says chemicals that are used in firefighting foam are of particular concern, but adds that contaminants can also be found in everything from non-stick cookware to waterproof clothing.

Episode 186: How metaphors make language more colorful

We use metaphors every day in ways that add meaning and color to our speech. But how does the human brain interpret this information? University of Arizona psychology professor Vicki Lai is studying the ways we use metaphor to enhance our daily language.

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