Several dozen scholars, analysts, scientists, and students gathered in Berkeley for an unprecedented and often contentious workshop on the future of nuclear power. The workshop, sponsored by UC Berkeley’s newly formed Center for Science, Technology, Medicine and Society, brought together social scientists and their counterparts in science, engineering, and policy.
Designing skyscrapers to withstand earthquakes is getting easier thanks to a team of researchers and practitioners organized by the Pacific Earthquake Engineering Research Center (PEER) at UC Berkeley. A new guide developed by PEER’s Tall Building Initiative, led by UC Berkeley structural engineering professor Jack Moehle, has standardized the design and review process for evaluating the seismic safety of buildings over 140 feet tall.
Many futurists envision a world in which polymer membranes with molecular-sized channels are used to capture carbon, produce solar-based fuels, or desalinate seawater, among many other functions. This will require methods by which such membranes can be readily fabricated in bulk quantities. A technique representing a significant first step down that road has now been successfully demonstrated. Berkeley Lab and UC Berkeley researchers — led by materials scientist Ting Xu — have developed a solution-based method for inducing the self-assembly of flexible polymer membranes with highly aligned subnanometer channels.
Cheryl A. Kerfeld, an adjunct professor in Plant & Microbial Biology, has won the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology’s Award for Exemplary Contributions to Education. Kerfeld heads the Joint Genome Institute’s Education and Structural Genomics programs.
Four UC Berkeley faculty members have been named 2010 Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the world's largest general scientific society and publisher of the journal Science.
UC Berkeley biologists have harnessed dogs' natural talent for sniffing out the scat of other animals for a good cause. With the help of Working Dogs for Conservation, a Montana-based nonprofit organization, researchers are fine-tuning the use of dogs as a non-invasive tool for wildlife studies and management.
UC Berkeley astronomers may have found the missing link between young, gas-filled, star-forming galaxies and older, gas-depleted galaxies typically characterized as “red and dead.” Leo Blitz and Katherine Alatalo report that a long-known “early-type” galaxy, NGC 1266, is expelling molecular gas, mostly hydrogen, from its core. The unusual galaxy may help explain how gas-filled galaxies rid themselves of their molecular gas.
UC Berkeley physicist David Feinberg, in collaboration with physicians at the University of Minnesota, has combined two new techniques to speed MRI scans of the brain by more than a factor of 10. The faster functional MRI scans will boost the national effort to map the brain’s wiring, called the Human Connectome Project.