Math Helps Forecast Crimes
April 30, 2012
Mathematicians are helping police find the locations where future crime is most likely to occur.
Saving Time, Money & Jobs
December 13, 2010
Operations researchers improved the efficiency of school bus routes while minimizing the amount of time the students ride. Researchers calculated travel distances to and from various pickup points and consulted census and district maps that show roads, railroads and rivers to find the best routes, eliminating two bus runs and saving thousands of dollars the first year.
Submerged In Oil
October 11, 2010
Physical oceanographers and geophysicists are using a robotic submarine to study the recent Gulf of Mexico oil spill in order to find how much oil is hidden beneath the surface. The submarine, a machine engineered to manipulate density and fitted with sensors to detect depth, location and methane levels traveled one mile below the surface and came within three miles of the spill, sampling the water for analysis.
Phantom Traffic Jams
May 24, 2010
Mathematicians explain how traffic jams form without apparent cause.
Life On Mars
April 12, 2010
Atmospheric scientists and physicists discover lightning on mars using a unique detector
Inside the Wind
November 20, 2009
Aerospace engineers use wind tunnel to study hurricane-strength winds.
Smart Bridge Keeping Drivers Safe
November 06, 2009
Civil engineers installed approximately 400 sensors in a bridge to monitor how corrosion, temperature and traffic loans impact the structure.
July 17, 2009
Researchers found that bacteria can initiate ice formation when super-cooled water droplets condense around the microbes and found evidence of these microbes in snow and rain samples from around the world.
Science of Origami
September 26, 2008
Mathematicians and Artists Use Algorithms to Make Complicated Paper Sculptures
NASA Saving Lives
September 12, 2008
Earth Scientists and Meteorologists Create Historically-Based, Realistic Weather Animations
Knowing Where Tornadoes Will Strike
August 01, 2008
Meteorologists recently studied the effect of gravity waves on tornado formation. They found that when gravity waves push down on rotating thunderstorms the storm compresses and spins faster. Being able to recognize and track gravity waves before they reach thunderclouds allows meteorologists to better predict tornadoes, increasing both the accuracy of their predictions and the amount of warning time that they can provide.
Creating 21st Century Video Games
November 01, 2007
A computer science student created an updated form of the classic video game Pong. The ball appears to move unpredictably, but is actually governed by algorithms that analyze the fluid dynamics of actual plasmas. Careful programming that considers the plasmaýs mathematical properties allows players to activate a vacuum effect or plasma jet that moves the ball in physically realistic ways as well.
Ice, Ice, Baby!
February 01, 2007
When droplets of melted snow drip down an icicle, they release small amounts of heat as they freeze. Heated air travels upwards and helps slow down the growth of the icicle's top, while the tip is growing rapidly. Knowledge of the mathematical equations that govern icicle growth -- the same that apply to stalactites -- could help in the prevention of icicle formation on power lines.
Rip Current Secrets Revealed
August 01, 2006
Rip currents flow in very erratic patterns, not in steady courses as previously believed -- which may help explain why they can be so dangerous even for experienced swimmers. Oceanographers have discovered the behavior by tracking the motion of colored dye added to a wave pool generating rip currents.
The Mystery of Black Holes
December 01, 2005
A satellite called Swift is revealing that black holes have a messier birth than previously thought. Instead of being created in one instant, astrophysicists now believe after a star dies and collapses -- ultimately forming a black hole -- it continues to cause havoc. The baby black hole devours material while at the same time spewing it back out, a process that is revealed in multiple outbursts of gamma rays.
Underwater Weather Watchers
January 01, 2005
Researchers are now collecting valuable information about ocean weather from a fleet of cost-effective instruments called Argo floats. Using hydraulic fluid in internal and external sacs, each float sinks about a mile and a half underwater. Every ten days, the float rises to the surface and transmits information on the ocean temperature and salt content. Researchers hope Argo will improve the ability to forecast the paths of hurricanes and where they will make their landfall.