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NCAR developed and Vaisala commercialized the dropsonde, a meteorological instrument that is deployed from an aircraft into hurricanes to improve both track and intensity forecasts

News & Events

The total solar eclipse on Aug. 21 will be the first to cross the country from coast to coast in nearly a century, giving scientists in the United States a unique opportunity to observe the Sun's corona with an array of technologies and methodologies. The findings of the various eclipse experiments could advance our knowledge of the Sun's complex and mysterious magnetic field as well as its effect on Earth's atmosphere.

NCAR - The National Center for Atmospheric Research hosted a press conference on July 21, one month before the eclipse. Speakers from NCAR, the National Science Foundation (NSF) , and NASA - National Aeronautics and Space Administration highlighted how networks of ground-based telescopes, GPS sensors, and radio receivers, as well as specialized instruments on aircraft, satellites, and space-based observatories, will be used to observe the Sun during the eclipse.

The New York Times writes about the crucial research done at the "Arks of the Apocalypse" - locations around the globe that store, protect and study the genes of species we could lose due to effects of the Anthropocene (the Era of Man). Two of the 8 they highlight are right here in Colorado: The USDA's Genetic Preservation Lab in Ft. Collins and the USGS's National Ice Core Lab in Lakewood.  Note: CO-LABS members toured the USDA lab in April; we'll tour the Ice Core Lab in November. 

Read the Sunday New York Times Magazine article. 

The Federal Laboratory Consortium describes:  Mussels can attach to and clog pipes, pumps, trash racks, cooling water systems, fire protection systems, and virtually any water-related infrastructure surface, thereby reducing the reliability and efficiency of water and hydropower systems while simultaneously increasing maintenance costs.  BurRec  has developed a Mussel Detection and Monitoring Program to better understand the spread of mussels. This program cooperates with states and other partners to come up with proactive measures to provide the earliest detection possible for any new mussel introductions that can reduce the need to remove mussels or interrupt Reclamation’s facilities and structures.

Zebra and quagga mussels have recently invaded the Colorado River and other western water bodies. Detecting and preventing the spread of these mussels is, therefore, critical to the Bureau of Reclamation’s primary mission of water and hydropower delivery. To advance the capability of monitoring water bodies for the presence of mussels, Reclamation has entered into a CRADA with Fluid Imaging Technologies to conduct research for improving automated detection and quantification of invasive mussel larvae (also known as “veliger”). Larvae are 70 to 200 microns in size (about half the size of the period at the end of this sentence). Detecting and monitoring invasive mussel larvae is the cornerstone of an effective strategy to manage these invasive nuisances. 

DID YOU KNOW: The National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON) is an NSF-funded large facility project being constructed and operated by Battelle Memorial Institute. NEON comprises terrestrial, aquatic, atmospheric, and remote sensing measurement infrastructure and cyber-infrastructure that deliver standardized, calibrated data to the scientific community through a single, openly accessible data portal. NEON infrastructure is geographically-distributed across the United States, including Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico, and will generate data for ecological research over a 30 year period.

NEON is designed to enable the research community to ask and address their own questions on a regional to continental scale around the environmental challenges identified as relevant to understanding the effects of climate change, land-use change and invasive species patterns on the biosphere. 

From Science News, May 26, 2017: Read the article

\Under President Donald Trump’s 2018 budget proposal, federal research spending into all three areas — and many others — would decline abruptly. The president delivered his budget request to Congress on May 23, presenting the sharpest picture yet of his administration’s priorities for federal science spending. Some science and technology programs within agencies would see their funds increase, but the administration recommends extensive cuts to basic research overall. 

For many science agencies and programs, the outlook appears stark. Some examples: The National Science Foundation, which funds research in all fields of science and engineering, would face an 11 percent cut. The U.S. Geological Survey’s budget would be cut by 15 percent. The National Institute of Standards and Technology, where research includes cybersecurity and nanotechnology, would face a 23 percent cut. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s primary research arm, which investigates weather, climate and ocean resources, would be cut 32 percent. The Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Science & Technology would be cut by 37 percent. The budget proposes a 16 percent cut for the Department of Energy’s Office of Science, the largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention would take a 17 percent cut. Food and Drug Administration funding (not including revenue from user fees) would be cut by 30 percent. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service would fall 22 percent. And, as expected, the National Institutes of Health’s budget would be slashed 22 percent.