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Exhibit Descriptions

NSF FY 2009 Budget Open House
Featuring science and engineering exhibits

2009 budget open house exhibits poster February 4, 2008

10:00 A.M.-5:00 P.M.
Credits: poster: Adrian Apodaca, NSF; large image: Laboratory for Computational Science and Engineering, University of Minnesota; other images: Gwen Morgan, NSF

Which Soccer Robot will Score? ... Make Ice Cream with Liquid Nitrogen ... Extract DNA ... plus 11 other exhibits, representing the broad range of research and education activities supported by NSF directorates and programs.


Photo of NSF Director Dr. Arden Bement, Jr., Martha Flanders, Kiisa Nishikawa, NSF Deputy Director Kathy Olsen

How Do They Do It? Understanding the Fastest Animal Movements Lead to Advances in Basic Science and Technology

Kiisa Nishikawa/Northern Arizona University
Location: Atrium

In terms of force-to-weight ratio, no human-engineered devices come close to approaching the performance of animal muscles, which can produce forces up to 658 times their weight. Studies of the neuromuscular basis for extremely rapid movements in animals have led to a novel model of muscle function. The model has the potential to revolutionize the field of muscle physiology, influence the design of prostheses, and perhaps even improve the efficiency of electric motors. The exhibit features a live chameleon and toad to demonstrate their extremely rapid prey capture movements.

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Photo of Deborah Estrin talking with Kathie L. Olsen, W. Lance Haworth and Teresa Kia in back

Technological Innovations from the Center for Embedded Networked Sensing

Deborah Estrin/University of California Los Angeles
Location: Room 120

Distributed wireless sensors embedded in the physical world, are increasingly enabling researchers to monitor and collect information on soil and air contaminants, medical patients and the structure of bridges. The Center for Embedded Networked Sensing (CENS) will have interactive displays highlighting images as sensors, participatory urban sensing and environmental sensing systems.



Photo of Jan Kettlewell discussing PRISM with Holly Smith

Georgia Partnership for Reform in Science and Mathematics (PRISM) Initiative

Jan Kettlewell/University System of Georgia
Location: Room 120

The Georgia Partnership for Reform in Science and Mathematics (PRISM) initiative is networking with universities and research institutions to provide challenging math and science curriculum for K-12 students. Through its Math + Science = Success campaign, PRISM is also raising public awareness of how vital math and science skills are in order for students to prosper in an science and technology driven society. The PRISM exhibit showcases two of its public service announcements, along with many tools used to guide the work of the partnership.

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Photo of James Weiland speaking to 8th graders

Biomimetic Microelectronic Systems Center

James Weiland/University of Southern California
Location: Room 110

The Biomimetic Microelectronics Systems Center (BMES) is revolutionizing how microelectronics interface with the human body. Interdisciplinary teams of scientists, engineers and clinicians are inventing novel engineered systems to treat severe neurological disorders. The exhibit will showcase advanced technology and basic science research targeted towards the next generation of implantable devices. Models of implants will be shown and an artificial vision simulator will be available.



Photo of Kathy Olsen (left) speaking with Allison Byrd and Susan Cook of Consortium for Ocean Leadership

Educational Programs and Outreach

Susan Cook/Consortium for Ocean Leadership
Location: Room 110

The Consortium for Ocean Leadership is a nonprofit organization that represents 95 of the leading public and private ocean research education institutions, aquaria and industry with the mission to advance research, education and sound ocean policy. The organization also manages ocean research programs in areas of scientific ocean drilling, ocean observing, ocean exploration and ocean partnerships.

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Photo of Julie Brigham-Gritte showing a core from meteorite impact lake

Thrill to Drill in the Chill

Julie Brigham-Grette/University of Massachusetts
Location: Atrium

In 2009, a team of international scientists will drill a meteorite impact lake to recover a continuous 3.6 million-year-long record of Arctic climate change. This record will become a landmark in understanding how our climate system works and how sensitive it is to change. El’gygytgyn Crater Lake is also a perfect Earth analog to craters on Mars, thought now to have once been filled with water. Sample sediment and rock cores will be on display at the exhibit.



See a Digital Optical module, like one of 4800 to be deployed over 140

Left-to-right: Evelyn Malkus, Francis Halzen, Jim Yeck

IceCube Project

Evelyn Malkus/University of Wisconsin
Location: Room 120

See a Digital Optical Module, like one of 4,800 to be deployed over 1,400 meters deep below the South Pole. Watch real neutrino events detected by the already deployed modules. Try on the cold weather gear that scientists wear at the South Pole. Watch a movie of the IceCube team drilling and deploying at the South Pole. The exhibit will feature an interactive display of real events detected by IceCube using computer monitors.

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Linda Argote

How Do Organizations Learn? Keys To Competing in a Knowledge-Based World

Linda Argote/Carnegie Mellon University
Location: Room 110

Effective knowledge management is a source of competitive advantage for firms. Organizations that are able to retain and transfer knowledge internally, while minimizing its external leakage or spillover, are more likely to survive and prosper than those that are less adept at knowledge management. The exhibit will show evidence of these "learning curves" from organizations in both the manufacturing and service sectors. The exhibit will also provide evidence of tremendous variation in the rates at which organizations learn.



Elementary school student playing with the humanoid robot DARwIn

PIRE Humanoids – A U.S.-Korea Collaboration to Advance Their Capabilities

Paul Oh/Drexel University
Location: Atrium

Humanoids are 2-legged robots engineered to mimic human form and function. Envisioned by many is a future where robots interact with people and assist in everyday chores. Such a vision demands advancing artificial intelligence and information technologies on robots. This exhibit describes an international partnership that combines engineering leadership from the United States and Korea to advance humanoids.

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Shawn Brown

An Open Infrastructure for Scientific Discovery

Michael Boyles/Indiana University; Scott Lathrop/University of Chicago; Melyssa Fratkin/University of Texas; Shandra Williams/Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center
Location: Room 120

TeraGrid is the world's largest, most comprehensive distributed cyberinfrastructure for open scientific research. Using high-performance network connections, TeraGrid integrates high-performance computers, data resources and tools and high-end experimental facilities around the country. Currently, TeraGrid resources include more than 750 teraflops of computing capability and more than 30 petabytes of online and archival data storage, with rapid access and retrieval over high-performance networks.



Josh Chamot (left) and Arun Ross (right)

Human Recognition Using Biometrics

Arun Ross/West Virginia University
Location: Room 110

Fingerprinting, iris scans and voice identification are all biometric measures that help with human recognition. Visitors to the West Virginia University EPSCoR exhibit will have the opportunity to interact with biometric devices that would recognize their identity. The exhibit will also feature an animation illustrating the various ongoing biometric projects at the university.

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NSF Employees

NSF Science Assistants Outreach Activities

Liz Lawrence/OAD
Location: Atrium

As part of the continuing effort to involve, educate and inform the local community, volunteer staff from the National Science Foundation are hosting hands-on activities demonstrating real-world applications of science, engineering and technology. These activities, geared mainly towards children, highlight fun and interactive ways to demonstrate basic scientific principles and techniques. Learn about materials and engineering by making glue and playing with Legos! Extract DNA and find out about physical properties of liquid nitrogen! These activities, and others, will be available for discovery during this day-long exhibition.


Photo of Middle School students trying on cold weather gear worn in Antarctic

Interactive Fun in the Polar Regions

David Friscic/OPP
Location: Atrium

Come try on the gear that scientists wear to protect themselves from sub-zero temperatures! Come see a replica of a real dinosaur skull that was discovered by scientists in Antarctica! Come walk on a map of the Arctic where researchers make their discoveries!


(left-to-right) Michelle Toombs, colleen Coyne, David Saunders, Stacie Boyd


Stacie Boyd/NSF
Location: Room 120

Research.gov is an exciting new web portal, recently released by the National Science Foundation. It provides the research community with a menu of modern grants management services, and the latest news and information for multiple federal research agencies. Visitors to the Research.gov booth will have an opportunity to try out the new site.


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