Science and Technology

People have been pitching in to help out some of Arizona’s endangered rivers—and they’re starting to make waves.

The Water Sentinels program got its start in 2006 as part of the Sierra Club’s Grand Canyon Chapter.

Members say they grew tired of seeing local streams degraded by pollution, or “reduced to bone-dry washes” because of dams, diversions, and pumping.

Now more than 100 regular volunteers work on two main rivers—the Verde and the Salt.

Shelley Smithson

A documentary airing on public television stations around the country this month will feature a team of researchers from Northern Arizona University.

Their pioneering work is changing the way scientists understand relationships in nature. 

Shelley Smithson

With school starting this month, nurses in Flagstaff have been busy giving students their shots.  But a growing number of parents in Coconino County are opting not to immunize their children.   Public-health officials fear this could mean the resurgence of diseases that were disappearing.  

By Stethoscopes

Arizona’s controversial immigration law could go into effect soon now that the Supreme Court has upheld parts of Senate Bill 1070.

And that has many undocumented immigrants in Northern Arizona feeling anxious.

But some health-care providers in Flagstaff are also worried.

They’re concerned the law could keep immigrants away from the doctor’s office and jeopardize public health.

Gillian Ferris Kohl / KNAU

Last month, President Obama handed out the most prestigious science award for young researchers. The Presidential Early Career Award honors science and engineering professionals in the beginning stages of their research careers. One of the recipients was 38 year old Flagstaff geologist, Justin Hagerty. His work focused on studying the evolution of the moon, particularly the dark side of the moon.

McKenzie Jones

Flagstaff officials fired up a new solar panel installation on Tuesday.

The city has installed 2,000 solar panels spanning 4.3 acres, and has plans for more.

A celebratory crowd gathered to flip the switch on a new solar installation.

The array,  out at the Wildcat Hill Wastewater Treatment Plant will provide 21% of the facility’s needs.

The city is working with an energy developer to offset the high energy costs of running the plant.

This is the first of three planned installations.

Randall Babb / Arizona Game and Fish Department

There was a time when scientists feared the demise of an ugly little fish called humpback chub, which has lived in southwestern rivers for millions of years. One of its last holdouts is in the Grand Canyon section of the Colorado River at a major tributary, the Little Colorado. Glen Canyon Dam took its toll on the little fish, and by the late 1990s, its population plummeted to a few thousand.

But these days, the humpback chub appears to be making a comeback.

Lowell Observatory

Lowell Observatory celebrated the completion of a risky journey Saturday with a special guest, Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon.

Lowell Observatory board member John Giovale quoted Neil Armstrong as he described why the observatory sought to build a $53 million state-of-the-art telescope.

“After a Nobel laureate in physics advised John F. Kennedy that we shouldn’t go to the moon, Neil is quoted as saying, ‘there can be no great accomplishment without risk.’”

Chris Strobel, NAU-TV

Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon, capped Lowell Observatory’s celebration of its newest telescope Saturday in Flagstaff.

Most Americans old enough to remember can tell you where they were and what they were doing the moment Neil Armstrong walked on the moon.

At a gala for Lowell Observatory Saturday, guests were once again transfixed as they heard the American legend recap his harrowing lunar expedition 43 years ago.    

NASA photo

Lowell Observatory will commission its newest, largest and most advanced telescope Saturday.

And a special guest at the telescope’s gala celebration will be astronaut Neil Armstrong, the first person to walk on the moon.

Lowell astronomers hope the new telescope will spark the scientific imaginations of a new generation, just as Armstrong’s moonwalk did 43 years ago.