Rachel Zurer is an intern for QUEST. Originally from Washington, DC, she's been steadily making her way further west and deeper into the world of science. After earning her B.A. at Duke University, she spent two years as a crew leader with the Utah Conservation Corps, building trails, killing weeds, and learning first hand about the awesomeness of nature. Then she moved indoors to become the Gallery Programs Coordinator for the Utah Museum of Natural History. Now a Berkeley resident, she's pursuing her MFA in Creative Nonfiction writing through Goucher College. She's thrilled to be helping explain cool science for people through as many types of media as possible
"We believe energy storage is the next big thing," says Craig Horne, CEO of EnerVault, a Sunnyvale startup. His company is developing a battery that could help solve a renewable energy problem (check out our previous post): how to keep electricity flowing when we need it, even as more of it comes from sources we can't control. Horne was a panelist at a UC Berkeley-Stanford sponsored CleanTech Conference about energy storage held last week at Berkeley's Lawrence Hall of Science.
When it comes to renewable power, California has had one main message: bring on the solar power, bring on the wind turbines! California and the country are heading fast towards a clean energy future. But renewables aren't perfect.
We heard about the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute's new underwater laboratory in a radio story last fall. When that story aired, the lab (known as the Monterey Accelerated Research System, or MARS) was just getting going, with lots of neat experiments planned. Now, few of those have become a reality.
February was a big month in the debate about the possible role of vaccines in causing autism, a subject we covered in last year's TV story, Autism: Searching for Causes and several blog posts. The claim-–that there might be a link between the immunizations children receive and the onset of autism–-has recently taken some hard hits.
Though it's easy to forget, any kid with a magnifying glass can tell you that you don't need a fancy degree to be a scientist. All it takes is a curious mind and a keen eye for observation. And in case the mere thought of a world full of wonders isn't enough to get you motivated, there are dozens of ways your personal observations can contribute to formal, published research. It's called "citizen science".