Search for Life Beyond Earth: Developing a Guidebook

Are we alone in the universe? Searching for life beyond our Solar System is one of the most ambitious efforts humans have ever undertaken. Because we do not have the ability to travel to distant exoplanets, scientists must rely on indirect clues that could help us find extraterrestrial life. Dr. Edward Schwieterman and his colleagues at the University of California, Riverside, have been developing advanced methods to determine the habitability of planets and detect the elusive signs of life from afar.

Continue reading “Search for Life Beyond Earth: Developing a Guidebook”

Monitoring Atmospheric Pollution with Laser Imaging

Lidar (Light Detection and Ranging) is a laser-based remote sensing tool that can measure the concentration of small particles, called aerosols, in the atmosphere. Monitoring aerosols is crucial for climate modeling, air quality measurements, and understanding the health impacts of atmospheric pollution. However, existing lidar systems require sophisticated and expensive equipment and are usually deployed by research technicians. They also have trouble measuring atmospheric pollutants near the ground, where they impact human health. Scientist Dr. John Barnes at NOAA in Boulder, Colorado, and his colleagues have developed an inexpensive and straightforward commercial lidar solution using widely available camera and optical equipment.

Continue reading “Monitoring Atmospheric Pollution with Laser Imaging”

Hadfield decorates Richard Branson with Astronaut Badge

Today, On July 11, 2021, a new era in space tourism just opened up: by having flown its founder, Richard Branson, the British American spaceflight company Virgin Galactic became the first spaceflight company to independently launch a paying civilian into outer space using the 50-mile high definition of outer space (see notes 1). Former Canadian astronaut and the former commander of the International Space Station Chris Hadfield has decorated Branson with an Astronaut Badge.

Continue reading “Hadfield decorates Richard Branson with Astronaut Badge”

5 Easy Ways to Reduce Your Home’s Energy Use with Technology

Many of us want energy efficiency at home not just to reduce energy bills and save money but for another reason – to help our environment.

Today, most of our electricity is generated through the combustion of fossil fuels. Unfortunately, this process contributes to about 40% of global greenhouse gas emissions, leading to a lot of environmental problems like global warming. Sadly, renewable energy sources are not yet adequate to power 100% of our needs.

As homeowners, we should take our part in lessening our footprint. There are many ways you can reduce your energy usage. In this post, we will share with you the 5 easy ways to efficiently use your energy at home with the help of technology.

Continue reading “5 Easy Ways to Reduce Your Home’s Energy Use with Technology”

Developing Sustainable Water Purification Technologies using Nanotechnology

A significant proportion of the world’s population has little to no access to clean water, and the water consumed by industrial activities continues to grow. Researchers from the Nanotechnology Enabled Water Treatment (NEWT) Center, which is headquartered at Rice University, are developing cutting-edge water purification technologies that can provide communities with access to clean and safe drinking water. They are also creating new wastewater treatment methods that allow the reuse of industrial effluent, to minimize freshwater withdrawals by industries. Instead of conventional methods that use large amounts of chemicals and energy, NEWT technologies are chemical-free, and often utilize solar energy.

Continue reading “Developing Sustainable Water Purification Technologies using Nanotechnology”