Category: Science

Paonangisi Beach by Phillip Capper

Science Cafe to Explore Pacific Island Plants and People

This month’s Honolulu Science Cafe will feature a prominent Honolulu botanist who will talk about the plants and the people of the island nation of Vanuatu. Tom Ranker is a professor and the chairman of the botany department at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. He joined UH in 2008, after an...

Institute for Astronomy Open House

New Exhibits Join Favorites at Astronomy Open House

One of my favorite geeky, family-friendly events is coming this weekend: the annual Open House hosted by the UH Institute for Astronomy. Parents, kids, and fans of space and science of any age are invited to visit the institute in Manoa Valley on Sunday, where they will find dozens of exhibits, hands-on activities...

Alpha Wind Hawaii

Oahu Offshore Wind Farm Proposed

Hawaii is already a hotbed of renewable energy research, so perhaps it’s not unexpected to hear about a proposal to situate as many as one hundred 200-meter tall wind turbines off the coast of Oahu. But it’s where the proposal is coming from, and how it might come to fruition,...

Moon RIDERS with PISCES and NASA

High School Students Shoot for the Moon

Students from ‘Iolani School in Honolulu and Kealakehe High School on the Big Island are on a field trip to where few kids have gone before. The students are part of Moon RIDERS, helping to test systems designed for a future NASA mission to the moon. Of course, RIDERS is a backronym,...

Photo Courtesy Hawaii Academy of Science/Ross D. Hamamura

State Science Fair Convenes on Monday

Some of the brightest young minds in Hawaii will prove their mettle at the 58th annual Hawaii State Science & Engineering Fair, the signature annual event of the Hawaii Academy of Science. The state fair, staged at the Hawaii Convention Center, includes only 500 of the top students from the more...

Hawaii State Science Olympiad

Science Olympiad State Finals on Saturday

When the Hawaii State Science Olympiad began more than a decade ago, only one school — Mililani High School — fielded a team. Now in its 11th year, this “academic track meet” has drawn over 100 teams and has engaged more than 2,000 students from elementary, middle and high schools from across the...

Honolulu Science Cafe Turns Six

The monthly “Honolulu Science Cafe” meetups enter their seventh year this month, with Tuesday’s event featuring Andy Kaufman the University of Hawaii researcher (not Andy Kaufman the late “eccentric American entertainer”). Kaufman is going to be talking about the “Aloha of Plants,” exploring the power of plants in our everyday lives. “Honolulu Science Cafe”...

Hawaii Science Writers Association Launched

If bloggers are a rare breed, science writers are an endangered species. And that’s a shame, since understanding science is critical to making smart decisions on some of the biggest issues of our age: climate change, water scarcity, GMOs, healthcare (measles, anyone?)… the list goes on. Science is on the...

Hawaii Researcher Builds App for Yellowstone

An award-winning researcher who recently joined the University of Hawaii has created a mobile app that can predict eruptions and notifies users so they can be prepared for them. But the eruptions in question are made of water, not lava, as the app was built for Yellowstone National Park in...

‘Reach for the Stars’ at UH on Dec. 10

A former astronaut turned renowned physicist and a project manager from NASA’s Mars Curiosity mission will be in Hawaii next week. They will both be featured at “Reach for the Stars,” a special public event hosted at the University of Hawaii on Wednesday, Dec. 10. Loren W. Acton flew on Space Shuttle...

Puna Lava Meets Power Poles

Puna Lava Meets Power Poles

The slow-moving Puna lava flow crossed its first road in Puna, a long-anticipated milestone in a creeping natural disaster that has been unfolding since June 27. With the havoc wreaked by Hurricane Iselle in August fresh in their minds, the folks at Hawaiian Electric Light Co. hatched a plan to...

Agripharmatech: From Weeds to Medicine

Agripharmatech: From Weeds to Medicine

For the first time in six years and over 300 shows, Bytemarks Cafe escaped from the basement studio at Hawaii Public Radio and headed out into the field to record on location. Burt and I headed over to Windward Community College to learn about the new agripharmatech program. We spent the full hour with...

Facebook Research Dances Around Informed Consent

Facebook Research Dances Around Informed Consent

The title of the research paper is certainly scholarly. In “Experimental evidence of massive-scale emotional contagion through social networks,” the results of a “massive experiment on Facebook” were published in The Proceedings Of The National Academy Of Sciences. They showed that moods can spread on the network like a disease by...

Hawaii Geek Beat: Space Apps

Hawaii Geek Beat: Space Apps

Space, the final frontier, was the theme of this week’s appearance on Hawaii News Now, chosen in honor of UC Berkeley astrophysicist Alex Filippenko. Filippenko, who is known worldwide for his scientific achievements as well as his efforts to bring astrophysics to the masses, will be our guest on Bytemarks Cafe...

More Income, More Trees

More Income, More Trees

The wealthier the city, the thicker the trees. So writes Tim de Chant of the ‘Per Square Mile‘ blog, focused on density and geography. In ‘Urban Trees Reveal Income Inequality,’ he cites a 2007 study: They found that for every 1 percent increase in per capita income, demand for forest...

Institute for Astronomy Open House on Sunday

Institute for Astronomy Open House on Sunday

This Sunday brings the annual Institute for Astronomy Open House in Manoa. As a science-positive geek dad, it’s one of my favorite family events, and you can browse photos I took last year on Flickr. There are many hands-on activities, from dry ice comet making to sunspot observing, informative displays, and...

The Explosive History of Kilauea

The Explosive History of Kilauea

My family and I love the Big Island. We visit as often as we can, particularly over the New Year’s holiday. That’s not happening this year, unfortunately, making me especially wistful for Hawaii County. But while we won’t be able to vacation in the cool, lush rainforests of Volcano Village,...

Island Middle School Students Shine in D.C.

Island Middle School Students Shine in D.C.

Two middle school students from Kailua and Hilo represented the Aloha State in a national science competition earlier this week. Winners and finalists in the sixth, seventh, and eighth grade from across the country attended at a black-tie gala at the Carnegie Institution for Science in Washington, D.C on Tuesday. Robert...

Local Nerd Nets $10,000 Scholarship

Local Nerd Nets $10,000 Scholarship

Congratulations to local science blogger Christie Wilcox, author of “Observations of a Nerd,” for winning a $10,000 scholarship from College Scholarships.org. Wilcox is pursuing her PhD in cell and molecular biology at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. The award was announced today, and came after ten days of public...

Gulf Oil Spill Would Dwarf O’ahu

Gulf Oil Spill Would Dwarf O’ahu

The Deepwater Horizon oil spill is a massive environmental disaster that is still unfolding. But even as the catastrophe is dominating headlines across the country, it’s hard to wrap your brain around the scale of the spill. Recent reports say the oil slick now covers 2,500 square miles of ocean…...