Sara Volz, 17, took first prize in the 2013 Intel Science Talent Search.
Here’s what she has to say about her research, her methodology, and her thoughts on the role of science in daily life.
Here’s a great video about beekeeping basics. Enjoy!
Kim Flottum is an acknowledged bee expert. He has a degree in horticulture from UW Madison. He worked for four years at the USDA Honey Bee Research Lab where he studied pollination ecology. He’s spent the years since then in raising bees, writing about bees, writing books about bees and beekeeping, and editing Bee Culture – the monthly magazine of American beekeeping.
Flottum wrote in a piece that appeared in CNN Opinion on Tuesday, April 2, “That honeybees die is not new. And that beekeepers accept that on average 30% or more of their livestock will vanish each spring isn’t new either. But when more than half of all the honeybees in this country die almost at once at once — that is new. And that’s what happened this spring.” Continue reading
A few years ago I decided to learn more about honey bees and beekeeping. I thought that knowing more about those two areas might help me to gain a better understanding of the then-new phenomenon of colony collapse disorder. I’d read a lot of information on the subject by the time I went – enough to have me pretty much convinced that pesticides were the root cause even though that didn’t explain everything in all cases. Off I went to a nearby Intro to Beekeeping class. I learned a lot about bees, that’s for sure. The most astounding thing I learned was that bees are routinely trucked all over the United States to be used as pollinators on a variety of crops.
The image of millions of bees riding around the interstates has never been one that brings me peace. I figure since I’m allergic to just about everything else, what are the odds that I’m not allergic to bee stings? Still, I guess bees have the right to ride the road. I’m certain the beekeepers have the right to truck their hives wherever and whenever it suits them. But it’s bothered me since I first learned of this practice. I’m not being facetious here. I’m serious when I say this. It seems like a lot of pressure to put on those bees.
Sources of Honey Bee Stress Continue reading
There are many proven alternatives to fossil fuels. The question now is which of these methods provide the greatest bang for our buck – the best return on our investment? Traditionally, investment decisions have been made in part through the use of the Return on Investment (ROI). This method computes and compares the ratio of dollars gained to dollars spent in generating that gain.
For energy, it’s not necessarily about the $ in and the $ out. We also care about the energy invested in producing energy. Why? Because if it costs more energy to produce than it produces, the dollar amounts are not really the point. Before we get to the Energy Return on Energy Investment (EROI), let’s get straight about the ROI. Continue reading
NJIT Professor Bruce Bukiet - Baseball’s Chief Geek – uses applied mathematics to compute the best teams of the season in the AL and NL each year. Bukiet is a Mets fan – nobody’s perfect – and you can see how well he did with his predictions for 2012 in this video.
Baseball is all about fluid dynamics – actually aerodynamics – since the fluid is air.
Aerios: concerning the air.Dynamics: force.The Ancient Greeks coined the term aerodynamics for their study of forces and the resulting motion of objects through air. Today, all the attention a pitcher pays to the placement of his fingers in relation to the seams is done to take advantage of the aerodynamic properties of a ball in flight. Because the seams are the only raised portion of the ball, a baseball made to spin as it moves alternates its smooth and raised surfaces. The cowhide – cut in two peanut-shapes – is smooth.The 216 stitches used to hold the cowhide together, a raised saddle pattern, or double horseshoes, on the ball. These smooth and raised surfaces are the cause of the ball’s performance as it responds to the effects of Lift, Thrust, Drag, and Gravity. Continue reading
Yes! Just a week away now! Baseball season officially begins on Monday, May 1. I cannot wait. And since I cannot wait, it seemed the perfect time to do a few posts about the science involved in baseball.
For instance. Did you know that every single ball in major league play is rubbed with mud from one place? Yes. I kid you not. The mud is called Lena Blackburne Original Baseball Rubbing Mud. It is named for Lena Blackburne, the baseball third base coach for the old Philadelphia Philly’s who found just the right mud on the Delaware River. Where? No way anyone is going to tell you. And yes, I have personally spoken to the Mud Guy. He really does go out there and harvest the mud each year. I have some of the mud. It looks like regular mud, but rub it on a brand new baseball and it leaves the ball spotless while making it easier to grip. Continue reading
Here’s a video of a 1946 air tunnel test performed at Langley.