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People & Society Discoveries

NSF's public investment in science, engineering, education and technology helps to create knowledge and sustain prosperity. Read here about the Internet, microbursts, Web browsers, extrasolar planets, and more... a panoply of discoveries and innovations that began with NSF support.

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Kettering University students participating in a community cleanup Igniting change in Vehicle City
Kettering University leads effort to improve city services in Flint, Michigan through high-speed networking
Released  March 24, 2015
woman exercising in front of monitor Fitness app connects exercisers to experts
NSF-supported Fitnet uses powerful computing and networking infrastructure to enable new capabilities
Released  March 23, 2015
Geologist Jeff Johnson working in the inner crater of Villarrica, an active volcano in Chile. Listen to the pulse of an erupting volcano: Chile's Villarrica
Scientists use infrasound instruments to record volcano's "circulation"
Released  March 13, 2015
Nadkarni explains tree biology to medium security inmates at the Stafford Creek Corrections Center. Canopy researcher goes out on a (tree) limb to promote public understanding of science
"Treetop Barbie" is among the bold, inventive tools developed by researcher to reach varied audiences
Released  March 12, 2015
student and teacher working at a  computer The Beauty and Joy of Computing in the Big Apple
NSF helps bring successful CS education program from UC Berkeley to New York City public schools
Released  March 11, 2015
Teachers in front of a building Encouraging diversity in computer science education
Effort from University of Virginia trains teachers to recruit, appeal to all students
Released  March 7, 2015
students and teachers at a conference Artful coders
AP Computer Science Principles draws arts students into computational thinking in Alabama
Released  March 6, 2015
two images of a snowflake Road safety through snowflake imaging
Technology that delivers incredible mid-air snowflake images may now help improve road safety
Released  March 2, 2015
Composite image of the northeast United States during an energy blackout. Creating the energy Internet
How leaders in research, industry and engineering education are working to create the energy network of the future
Released  February 25, 2015
DOW scientists Karen Kosiba and Traeger Meyer with radar truck Mission impossible? New England's snowstorm 'bomb' from inside a Doppler-on-Wheels
Trapped in gale-force winds for 24 hours, scientists got the data
Released  February 11, 2015
Video of the ignition of pine needles by contact with a hot steel particle Engineering the spark that starts the wildfire
Understanding how hot metal shards cast off by infrastructure ignite wildfires
Released  February 10, 2015
coral reef and fish near Philippines Good news and bad news for coral reefs
There's good news related to marine protected areas, but bad news related to loss of coral cover
Released  February 9, 2015
example of the experimental Potential Storm Surge Inundation Map showing the Texas Gulf coast Communicating a hurricane's real risks
NSF- and NOAA-sponsored studies help improve the quality of emergency communications
Released  February 6, 2015
animated map of transit systems Walking, driving and riding in a winter wonderland
Using big data techniques, engineers more accurately model how people adapt to snowstorms and other disruptions
Released  February 5, 2015
People working under a bridge Warding off failure
Tiny, self-powered sensors push the limits of health and usage monitoring
Released  February 4, 2015
Photo of Bob Bea After the lecture: Bob Bea and a lifetime spent outwitting disaster
Nearly 10 years post-Katrina, the engineer who co-led a team that investigated the New Orleans levee system reflects on what it takes to have resilient and sustainable infrastructure -- and the next generation of engineers
Released  February 4, 2015
Wind turbine on snow Floating wind turbines bring electricity where it's needed
Altaeros Energies' research into advanced materials enables new heights for wind energy
Released  February 3, 2015
Electric vehicle and charging station. Improving electric vehicle sales may require solving unique chicken and egg problem
Subsidizing construction of charging stations possibly a cheaper way to reach US sales goals than tax incentives
Released  January 29, 2015
citizen scientist with rain gauge in Rocky Mountains Crowdsourcing yields a more accurate picture of rainfall and snowfall
Citizen scientists involved with the CoCoRaHS project advance their knowledge of atmospheric science while reporting precipitation data that is used by the National Weather Service and other agencies
Released  January 15, 2015
women with their hands together Addressing the shortage of women in technology
National Center for Women & Information Technology connects universities, companies, nonprofits, and government organizations to increase women’s participation in computing and technology
Released  December 12, 2014
students and professor with robot and a computer CompuGirls: Young women have role to play in technology field
Latest focus of project is creating humanoid robots
Released  December 12, 2014
ipad showing two student characters Helping students thrive in a digital world
Dual-enrollment computer science classes in Texas provide an on-ramp to STEM careers
Released  December 11, 2014
student and teacher A new approach to creating a computing curriculum
Innovative, NSF-funded project brings together teachers and researchers to rethink computer science education
Released  December 10, 2014
students and participants at Mobile Apps Expo at Trinity College App-ealing to students through app development
Team led by Trinity College professor develops computer science course that inspires students through mobile application development
Released  December 10, 2014
Danielle Bassett Researcher studies how different brain regions interact during tasks
2014 MacArthur Fellow’s work has potential to diagnose and treat Alzheimer’s disease, schizophrenia, addiction, stroke, autism, epilepsy and Parkinson’s disease
Released  December 8, 2014
Ohio State's Adaptive Suspension Vehicle (ASV) and engineers A foundation for robotics
NSF celebrates more than 40 years supporting U.S. robotics research
Released  November 21, 2014
A humanoid robot from MIT lab A day in the life of Robotina
What might daily life be like for a research robot that's training to work closely with humans?
Released  November 20, 2014
students at computer Cybersecurity: It's about way more than countering hackers
Growing professionals in cybersecurity means supporting an interdisciplinary approach that develops sophisticated thinkers
Released  October 30, 2014
hands holding a smartphone Experts identify easy way to improve smartphone security
Assigning risk scores to apps may slow down unwarranted access to personal information
Released  October 28, 2014
health workers in biohazard gear Halting the spread of Ebola: Nigeria a model for quick action, scientists find
Rapid control measures critical to stopping the virus in its tracks
Released  October 16, 2014

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