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Beginning scientists receive presidential awards
Date:11/1/2007

"Each earthquake as it occurs provides unique information about Earth structure," says Fouch. "By using seismic arrays, such as EarthScope's USArray, we are able to capture these 'snapshots' of Earth's interior. Our goal is to link what we measure seismically with our understanding of changes in rock properties within temperature and chemical composition deep within Earth. Using this information, we can then link these deep structures back to plate tectonic history, which in turn enables us to connect what we image at depth with what geologists tell us about the history of rocks at the surface."

Fouch brings his passion for his subject to the training of young earth scientists. While it's possible to obtain seismic data from any computer connected to the Internet, he values the opportunity to take students out to the field areas where such data are actually gathered. In addition, having noticed that many earth science students seem to fear geophysics because it is more math- and physics-based, he is developing tools that help students without a lot of background in seismic data processing be able to analyze data as part of standard class term projects.

"Once people can look at and process the actual data," he says, "they get excited about it very quickly."

Carlos Rinaldi, associate professor in the department of chemical engineering at the University of Puerto Rico (UPR), Mayaguez, is recognized for his research into the response of suspensions of magnetic nanoparticles--minuscule magnets dispersed in a fluid medium--to time varying magnetic fields.

"There are novel phenomena you can observe in the interplay between magnetic forces and viscous forces," notes Rinaldi.

These include the random motion of the small particles in response to collisions with the surrounding fluid molecules.

When time varying magnetic fields, such as oscillating or rotating fields, are applied, the tiny magnetic dipoles tend to trac
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Contact: Maria Zacharias
mzachari@nsf.gov
703-292-8454
National Science Foundation
Source:Eurekalert

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