Brain Food

Hungry for more stories on science, culture and technology?

Check out Brain Food: Insights and Discoveries from Northern Arizona. From ground breaking scientific research to global music projects, Brain Food profiles some of the unique projects happening in the region and the interesting people behind them.

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KNAU and Arizona News
9:01 am
Thu March 26, 2015

Brain Food: NAU Invention May Help Solve Gun Crimes Faster

Christopher Mann's laboratory at Northern Arizona University is strewn with bullet cartridges. He's an optical research scientist working on an invention to help detectives solve gun-related crimes more quickly, accurately and affordably. In his ballistics forensics lab, Mann is testing his 3-D imager - a camera system that uses light waves to record microscopic details found in shell casings.

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KNAU and Arizona News
9:13 am
Thu March 19, 2015

Brain Food: NAU Herpetologist Studies Rattlesnake Relocation

Erika Nowak, a herpetologist with the Colorado Plateau Research Station and Department of Biological Sciences at NAU.
Credit NAU

Relocating rattlesnakes is tricky business for more than just the obvious reason. Removing them from their home range or habitat can be stressful to the point of death for the reptiles.

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KNAU and Arizona News
4:31 am
Thu March 12, 2015

Brain Food: Textile Therapy

Clinical psychologist Ann Futterman-Collier is studying the physiological effects of handcrafting textiles. She conducts research at the Well Being Lab at Northern Arizona University
Credit KNAU/Bonnie Stevens

For centuries, people have been knitting, crocheting, weaving and quilting...mostly for functionality but more recently, for enjoyment. And now a clinical psychologist in Flagstaff is studying the emotional and physical benefits of handcrafting textiles. Ann Futterman-Collier runs the Well Being Lab at Northern Arizona University.

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KNAU and Arizona News
9:13 am
Thu February 26, 2015

Brain Food: New Horizon To Study Dwarf Planets In Kuiper Belt

KNAU's Bonnie Stevens interviews planetary scientist Alan Stern at a lecture in Flagstaff. Stern is heading up the New Horizons mission to study Pluto.
Credit KNAU/Bonnie Stevens

Eighty-five years ago, almost to the day, astronomers at Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff discovered Pluto. It was considered the 9th planet from the sun. But, several decades later, it was demoted to dwarf planet status. Alan Stern is a planetary scientist heading up the New Horizons mission to study its surface. At a recent lecture in Flagstaff he said there are hundreds of dwarf planets in the Kuiper Belt where Pluto lives.

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KNAU and Arizona News
5:06 am
Thu February 19, 2015

Brain Food: NAU Physicist Creates Nanorobots That Could Fight Cancer

NAU physicist, John Gibbs
Credit KNAU/Bonnie Stevens

Tiny nanorobots may be the next big breakthrough in fighting cancer. About the size of a virus, the magnetic, metal machines could be used to detect and treat tumors from inside malfunctioning cells. John Gibbs is a physicist at Northern Arizona University and makes these microscopic nanomachines.

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KNAU and Arizona News
5:30 am
Thu February 12, 2015

Brain Food: Studying Pluto's Ice

NAU's ice lab
Credit KNAU/Bonnie Stevens

Pluto has a surface of nitrogen and methane ice. Scientists know this from telescope observations. But, when the New Horizons spacecraft flies by the dwarf planet in July, they hope to know far more about its icy composition. Flagstaff astronomer Stephen Tegler will be analyzing the data.

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KNAU and Arizona News
5:09 am
Thu February 5, 2015

Brain Food: For Retired NAU Engineering Prof, Classic Cars Were A Way To Engage Students

Retired NAU electrical engineering professor, Jerry McGlothin poses with his 1964 Vetta Ventura coupe at the Barrett Jackson Car Auction in Phoenix.
Credit KNAU/Bonnie Stevens

Every year, generations of classic car enthusiasts flock to sunny Phoenix for the Barrett Jackson Collector Car Auction. It's the essence of automobile artistry, power and engineering. And that's a perfect combination for Jerry McGlothin, a retired engineering professor at Northern Arizona University, and an antique car junkie.

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KNAU and Arizona News
5:46 am
Thu January 22, 2015

Brain Food: NAU Bark Beetle Researcher Fights Back With Fungus

NAU entomologist Rich Hofstetter tests his "fungal spray" on bark beetles
Credit KNAU/Bonnie Stevens

Growing microscopic organisms in a lab to conduct biological warfare might sound like the makings of a science fiction movie. But in the case of the bark beetle, it's real. An entomologist at Northern Arizona University is using a fungus to combat the beetles' deadly attack on forests across the West. As Arizona Public Radio's Bonnie Stevens reports, the fungus is the latest in a string of unconventional methods to stop the bugs' rampage.

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KNAU and Arizona News
5:00 am
Thu January 15, 2015

Brain Food: The Human Microbiome

If you’re one of those people who puts on weight while another person eating the same meal doesn’t, blame your gut! Greg Caporaso says it’s all about the microbiome — or the microbes living in our bodies — that determines how many calories we extract from food and also, how susceptible we are to disease.

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KNAU and Arizona News
9:31 am
Thu November 20, 2014

Brain Food: Thriving At Home After A Hospital Stay

Credit hillsidehealthcare.com

Very few people want to go to the hospital. Even fewer want to be readmitted after an illness or injury. Now there's a new local program designed to keep you from going back.

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