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Author: David Salisbury

Nuclear remediation veteran comments on accident at Japanese nuclear power plant

Mar. 23, 2011—Frank Parker, who has studied Nagasaki, Chernobyl and Three Mile Island, comments on the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Japan.

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Graphene expert receives NSF CAREER award

Mar. 21, 2011—Vanderbilt physicist Kirill Bolotin has received NSF’s CAREER award, which supports exceptionally promising junior faculty members.

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“Multiverse” subject of public lecture at Vanderbilt

Mar. 17, 2011—Well-known MIT cosmologist Alan Guth gives an invited lecture on the possibility that our universe is a multiverse that consists of a series of pocket universes each with different physical properties.

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Large Hadron Collider could be world’s first time machine

Mar. 15, 2011—If the latest theory of Tom Weiler and Chui Man Ho is right, the Large Hadron Collider – the world’s largest atom smasher that started regular operation last year – could be the first machine capable of causing matter to travel backwards in time. “Our theory is a long shot,” admitted Weiler, who is a...

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New laser technique opens doors for drug discovery

Mar. 14, 2011—A new laser technique can measure interactions between proteins tangled in a cell's membrane and a variety of other biological molecules: extremely difficult measurements that can aid the process of drug discovery.

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Worm grunting on NPR

Mar. 11, 2011—“What is worm grunting?” That is one of the questions that moderator Richard Sher asked panelists last weekend in a rerun of a pre-recorded edition of “Says You!” – the popular radio game show that airs on National Public Radio. After all the guessing and wise-cracking, Sher explained that worm grunting was the practice of...

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Going underground in search of new drugs

Mar. 10, 2011—Every few months, chemist Brian Bachmann sheds his white lab coat, collects his flashlight, helmet, surgical gloves and knotted rope, puts on old clothes and hiking boots and heads to a nearby cave. Bachmann, an assistant professor of chemistry at Vanderbilt, has combined his industrial experience in natural products drug discovery with his undergraduate hobby of caving...

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Inflationary universe subject of public lecture

Mar. 4, 2011—Today, the idea that the universe expanded dramatically for a period of time after its birth in the Big Bang is one of the cornerstones of modern cosmology. However, Paul Steinhardt, the Albert Einstein Professor of Science at Princeton University, will provide an “unconventional perspective” on this theory in a free public lecture titled, “Inflationary...

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Future of the Parable of the Lost Sheep

Mar. 3, 2011—Bob Scherrer is bicultural: Not only is he a practicing theoretical physicist, but the chairman of Vanderbilt’s physics department is also a published author of science fiction. Several years ago we did a story about his split personality. Normally, Scherrer keeps his physics and science fiction efforts separate. So far he has published eight science...

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Hal, make room for Watson

Feb. 18, 2011—Hal, make room for Watson. When it defeated two of the all-time champions of the television game Jeopardy this week, the IBM computer named Watson joined Hal 9000 in the ranks of intelligent computers in the popular culture. The characterization of Hal as portrayed in the movie “2001,” embodied the dream of computer scientists 50...

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Three faculty receive NSF career development awards

Feb. 15, 2011—Dickerson, Sung and Webster recognized for research including nanoparticles, regenerating blood vessels and finding options for 'inoperable' patients.

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A few fungi factoids

Feb. 7, 2011—For some reason, fungi don’t get no respect. Despite the fact that genetically they are more closely related to animals than to plants and despite the fact that they play an absolutely critical role in the environment, most people don’t give them much thought. Evolutionary biologists here at Vanderbilt have discovered that fungi are telling...

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