Monthly Archives: April 2014

RMAC Championships

The 2014 RMAC Golf Championship took place this past week in Goodyear, Arizona and the Orediggers finished eighth out of nine teams. After the first day of competition, the Orediggers were sitting in sixth place after two rounds of play, but in the final round of play on day two, Mines went +13 for the round to fall to eighth. The number seven team in the nation, Western New Mexico, lead from start to finish and captured the RMAC championship.

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Dinner Plate Tectonics

What drives plate tectonics? Heat flow, of course. Or energy transfer…it is all the same. It is the act of sketching poorly-drawn Mohr’s circles that tires the mind and the hours upon hours scanning for the missing parenthesis that drains the eyes. Is there is even time to eat dinner? Lunch? Breakfast? Forget second breakfast and supper, right? But the physical laws of the universe remain: heat flows, dinner plates subduct, spread, or slip past each other from a lapse in friction, and fall onto the floor in a pile of entropic ceramic pieces.

“Medicine Women of the Plains” as told by Red Feather Woman/Rose Red Elk

In March, Rose Red Elk visited Mines to help campus celebrate Women’s History Month.Rose Red Elk, also known as Red Feather Woman, came in traditional dress and shared songs and stories with the audience. She is a member of the Sioux/Assiniboine Tribes, hailing from the Fort Peck Reservation in northeast Montana. She described how she grew up listening to tribal folk stories but began her career in science and technology. While at Texas A&M, she started that college’s first Native American science and engineering group. She had a promising career at IBM, but decided that her true calling was the arts. She has now been a professional singer and storyteller for over twenty years; she has put out four award-winning albums and is currently working on a comic book for the Department of the Interior.

Scientific discoveries this week: 4/28/14

Ilulissat, Greenland – A study led by Shfaqat Khan from the Technical University of Denmark has revealed that the Greenland Ice Sheet, the second largest body of ice in the world, is melting at a much faster rate than previously thought. A portion of the before unnoticed melting comes from the Northeastern Greenland, which was thought to be the last stable part of Greenland in terms of melting ice and glacial break-away. Because of warmer summers due to climate change, one of the glaciers in the South, Jakobshavn Isbrae, is retreating at four times the rate it had been in 1997.

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What Happened to the Ancient Martian Atmosphere?

On Tuesday, April 22nd, David Brain gave a lecture all about Mars. There has been much discussion about whether or not Mars had water on its surface and what happened to that water. David Brain works at the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics as well as the Department of Astrophysics and Atmospheric Science at CU Boulder. He has spent a lot of time studying the surface of Mars, and examining the differences between Mars and Earth that would cause such different environments, when the ancient Martian surface was likely similar to Earth’s modern environment.

“I’m Not an Astronaut but I get to Play One at Work”

Penny Pettigrew has the coolest job in the world—she provides live support for astronauts living on the International Space Station. Pettigrew, who graduated from Colorado School of Mines with a BS in Chemistry in 1992, works for NASA in the Payload Operations Integration Center at the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Alabama. Though Pettigrew has never been to space herself, providing live support to astronauts on the ISS allows her to fulfill that childhood dream.

Headlines from around the world: 4/28/14

Following a federal appeals court ruling that struck down Federal Communications Commission (FCC) proposed rules to guarantee a free and open internet, the FCC has announced it will propose rules that would allow internet content providers to pay for special lanes to deliver content faster. Consumer advocacy groups are attacking the proposal on the basis that prices for service providers that can afford the fast lanes such as Disney or Netflix would probably be made to raise prices, while at the same time, smaller start-ups will be unable to afford the lanes which would stifle creativity and innovation online.

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