Wed, 01/17/2018 - 12:00am

Engineering

New Fields For Food

Mary-Dell Chilton's DNA discoveries launched the field of genetically modifying plants to ward off pests, use less water, and improve yields. Supporters say it could help feed the world. Opponents say it's not safe, threatening the environment and people in ways that may not be known yet. By discovering the mechanism of DNA transfer, Chilton bestowed that power to humans.

Looking For Lincoln

Former Disney animator and President Lincoln fan Christopher Oakley never thought his project to animate the Gettysburg Address would lead to an important historical discovery. But while researching the project, Oakley used his animation skills and new technology to discover a never-before-seen image of Lincoln at Gettysburg, also revealing that an image everyone thought was of Lincoln, was not.

What’s My Story: Marine Conservation Biologist

David Johnston is an Assistant Professor of the Practice of Marine Conservation & Ecology at the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University. As a kid, growing up miles from the ocean, he fell in love with the dazzling underwater photography brought into his living room by television. Today, he uses radio telemetry to get a more detailed image of the behavior of the ocean’s magnificent mammals.

What’s My Story: Zoologist

Roland Kays started studying animals in a physics class. He thought he wanted to work in a genetic engineering lab but thought better of it when he saw a film about a zoologist peering into prairie dog mounds looking for burrowing owls. He switched his major to zoology and fell in love with mammals. Today, he keeps tabs on thousands of mammals in their natural habitats with the aid of new technology and citizen volunteers at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences.

What's My Story: Ph.D. Research Assistant in Chemistry

It took Tana Villafana some time to figure out that she wanted to be a chemist. She started out hoping to be a writer and a musician. But as things worked out, she got to combine her love of the humanities with her love of electromagnetism.

Ph.D. Research Assistant: employed by a university to conduct research while seeking to earn a doctorate degree. They are typically responsible to a principal investigator.

Riding the Wind

From cyclists to race cars, the motion of an object is determined by the sum of the forces acting on it. Those forces have both strength and direction and they can be observed and measured to predict future motion. Watch how an aeronautics engineer works with Newton's three Laws of Motion to test the best posture and helmet for a cyclist in a wind tunnel.

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