Science & Technology

Science & Technology

Steve O'Connell

Everyday people are exposed to chemicals and pollutants. Researchers at Oregon State University in Corvallis have developed a silicone wristband that can detect these compounds. The new accessory can help scientists understand the link between exposure to toxins and disease. The wristband looks similar to the ubiquitous colorful rubber wristbands that often promote causes or charities, such as breast cancer. Kim Anderson is a professor in the OSU Department of Environmental and Molecular Toxicology.

Cameron Yee

Fallen trees from the recent ice storm in the South Willamette Valley can still be seen littering parks and yards.  After the storm, it became obvious that certain kinds of trees were damaged more than others.  KLCC wondered why.

Alby Thoumsin is an arborist with Eugene’s Sperry Tree Care.  He says Oregon white oaks, silver maples and sweet gums were hit the hardest during the ice storm.  The reason has to do with the silhouette of the trees.  Vase-shaped trees sustained more damage than those shaped like cones.  

Jes Burns

The South Willamette Valley consistently ranks high nationally for levels of air pollution.  According to the American Lung Association, Eugene-Springfield was the 14th worse in the country for “short-term particle pollution” in 2013.  

Air pollution is a complex mixture of chemicals and particulate matter –so complex, scientists still don’t know exactly what’s in the air we breathe.  But now they’re one step closer.

Boosting Biofuel Crops With Super Forecasts

Feb 3, 2014
Anna King

Northwest farmers are trying to get into the business of biofuels. They know the jets of the future may run on oil from crops like canola seeds. But that’s far from commercially viable. One of the challenges is getting the most out of the crops that can be turned into biofuels. Now, agricultural researchers are studying how drone-like aircraft and even satellites can help make more accurate forecasts than ever.

John Sulik plugs in the batteries to his remote-control helicopter. It’s about the size of a car tire.

Anna King: "That’s it? It look’s like a daddy long legs."

Jes Burns

University of Oregon student-entrepreneurs walked away with a cash prize after competing in the inaugural Colligan User Interface Design Challenge. The aim of the so-called "Duck Tank" was to give students real-world experience conceptualizing a product and pitching it to investors. 

Fans of reality TV may be familiar with ABC's "Shark Tank."  In the show, entrepreneurs pitch a business idea before a panel of venture capitalists who either fund or reject the pitch.

"Duck Tank" is a bit less cut-throat.

The University of Oregon Ducks looked much-improved Saturday, while the Oregon State Beavers faced a tough road opponent in Arizona. 

The Ducks rebounded from last week's loss to Stanford with a 44-21 victory over the University of Utah Utes. Quarterback Marcus Mariota went into the game with questions about the health of his left knee, but threw for 288 yards and three touchdowns at Autzen Stadium.

Photo courtesy of electriccarsport.com

This (last) week, governors from eight states including Oregon’s John Kitzhaber joined an initiative to put 3.3 million zero-emission vehicles on the road by 2025.

The governors met in Sacramento, to sign a joint memorandum to purchase more electronic vehicles, or E-V’s, increase infrastructure, and offer financial incentives. U.S. electric car sales more than tripled in 2012. Oregon’s Chief E-V Officer, Ashley Horvat says the state has more fast chargers than any other who has them, and that’s helping E-V sales.

A Woman's Quest To Prove Coding Is More Than Nerdy

Oct 15, 2013
Lucy Ohlsen

It’s a no-brainer that you have to be able to use a computer to get most jobs today. Public schools in Eugene encourage students to use technology as an educational tool. Kiki Prottsman is a local woman who hopes to inspire young people to become more than just users.

These middle schoolers are at math and computer science camp.

 “It's fun, but sometimes you miss a friends sleepover or a birthday party or something. But you make up to it. Like, your friends won't be there in the future but your education will be."

EWEB Approves Voluntary Smart Meters

Oct 2, 2013

After a crowded public hearing, the Eugene Water and Electric Board voted to install smart meters only for customers who request it. A number of people spoke in opposition to the wireless meters citing health concerns. EWEB spokesman Joe Harwood says there is no risk.

Harwood: “I’m frankly speechless. I don’t know how to respond to people that think that radio waves are going to somehow cause a health effect. It’s patently ridiculous.”

U.S. Department of Energy

Fifty years ago Thursday, President John F. Kennedy stepped off a Marine helicopter into the dry heat of the Hanford Nuclear Reservation in southeast Washington. He was there to see the massive new N Reactor. The reactor was the first to produce both plutonium and power in the U.S. As Correspondent Anna King reports, the visit also was part of Kennedy’s efforts to de-escalate the Cold War.

Hanford worker Bill McCullough remembers Sept. 26, 1963 clearly when President Kennedy came to visit.
Bill McCullough: “It was a very hot day, and we hit bumper to bumper traffic.”

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