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Annette Hacker, director, (515) 294-3720
Office: (515) 294-4777
Iowa State researchers improving plastics made from corn and soy proteins
Iowa State University researchers are using ultrasonics to break up and disperse nanoclays that can reinforce biorenewable and biodegradable plastics made from corn and soy proteins.
Divorce increases chronic stress, later illness in women according to ISU study
Researchers from Iowa State's Institute for Social and Behavioral Research found in a study of 416 rural Iowa women that divorce increased chronic stress and produced greater physical illness over a 10-year span.
Video of biorenewable resources meeting
The Oct. 23 "town hall" meeting to discuss ISU efforts and opportunities in the area of biorenewables and renewable fuels is available online. Led by ISU President Gregory Geoffroy, the meeting featured numerous ISU experts in biorewables and drew nearly 400 participants.
Researchers to study ethanol expansion effects
ISU researchers will evaluate the costs and benefits of ethanol expansion to rural communities as part of a $676,722 biofuels research grant.
ISU team develops kitchen cabinets that assist persons with disabilities, aging adults
A research team from Iowa State developed "Kwik-change Kabinets" -- modular cabinet units with adjustable cabinet and kitchen countertop components. The universal-design of the units allows adjustments to be made to fit any person's height in as little as 10 minutes with a simple screwdriver.
ISU design students will use steamroller to make art
Iowa State art and design students will haul out the heavy machinery to create large-format prints with a road builder's steamroller on Friday, Oct. 27. Using chisels and routers, the students have carved designs on 4-foot-by-8-foot sheets of birch plywood. They will use the steamroller to create prints from the woodblocks from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday at Rueter's, a construction and equipment dealer at 5815 W. Lincoln Way, Ames. The public is invited to watch the printing process.
Miller to lead Center for Plant Responses to Environmental Stresses
ISU plant virus researcher W. Allen Miller has been named director of the Center for Plant Responses to Environmental Stresses, a center that is part of the Plant Sciences Institute. Miller is a professor of plant pathology and of biochemistry, biophysics and molecular biology. Researchers in the center study the molecular mechanisms plants use to detect and respond to viruses, bacteria, nematodes, drought, flooding, pollutants and other stresses.
ISU part of partnership competing for BP biofuels research lab
A partnership of the University of California, San Diego, Iowa State University and the J. Craig Venter Institute will compete for BP's $500 million Energy Biosciences Institute. BP, a global energy company, has invited the University of California, San Diego, to submit a proposal for a biofuels research institute to be located on or adjacent to that campus. The university has asked Iowa State and the Venter Institute -- a non-profit research institute based in Rockville, Md., and dedicated to the science of genomics -- to be partners in the proposed institute.
Let's play 'Hardball'
A large crowd of ISU students and community members joined MSNBC's Chris Matthews and Sen. John McCain in Stephens Auditorium for a live broadcast of "Hardball" Oct. 18.
ISU dining director named
Nancy Levandowski, a California-based business consultant, has been named director of campus dining services. Previously, she was a resident district manager for Aramark, an international food service company.
Student meteorology group best in nation
The Iowa State University student chapter of the American Meteorological Society has been named the national Student Chapter of the Year.
Delaware Senator Biden to present Manatt-Phelps Lecture in Political Science Oct. 31
U.S. Sen. Joseph Biden, D-Del., will present the fifth annual Manatt-Phelps Lecture in Political Science at Iowa State University at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 31, in the Sun Room, Memorial Union.
Webcast, mini-conference on ethanol Nov. 13
Experts will offer a variety of perspectives on the corn-based ethanol industry in Iowa in a statewide webcast and mini-conference Nov. 13. The conference is sponsored by the ISU economics department.
Engler will explore critical landscapes in Presidential Lecture Nov. 6
There's more to landscape architecture than moving dirt and planting flowers, says Mira Engler. The Iowa State University landscape architecture professor will discuss her ideas on critical design and present examples of her work during the fall Presidential University Lecture. "Critical Landscapes: From Pork Barrels to Otherworldly Dumps and Gardens," will be at 8 p.m. Monday, Nov. 6, in the Sun Room, Memorial Union.
This graphic explaining the chemistry of a potential catalyst took honorable mention honors in the 2006 Science and Engineering Visualization Challenge sponsored by the National Science Foundation and the journal Science. Matt Heying, Changwon Suh, Krishna Rajan and James Oliver of Iowa State University and Simone Seig and Wilhelm Maier of the Universitat des Saarlandes created the graphic.
In the news
Yield of dreams
Pat Schnable and the Plant Sciences Institute are featured in Successful Farming magazine's October cover story, "Yield of dreams," about groundbreaking crop technology in the works. Research by Schnable and others to sequence the corn genome is key. It will enable scientists to speed development of varieties with desired traits, like drought resistence and cold tolerance, so that agricultural productivity can keep pace with increasing demand for food and fuel.
Time appears right for Dr. Fehr's beans
The Wall Street Journal, Oct. 2
In his cramped lab at Iowa State University here, Walt Fehr developed a soybean whose oil could help eliminate one of the biggest problems facing the food industry today: trans fats blamed for everything from heart disease to hypertension to memory loss.
In search of the next big thing in biomass
Sioux City Journal
ISU graduate student Andy Heggenstaller is searching for the next cash crop in the ethanol boom with an eye on the environment. The agronomy student is not only trying to help Iowa farmers with their bottom lines, but is looking for crops and practices that are beneficial for Iowa's fertile topsoil and its waterways.
Academic All-Big 12
15 athletes earn All-Big 12 academic honors.