News And Upcoming Events
What is a Science Café?
Science cafés are live events that involve a conversation with a scientist about current topics in science and technology. They are open to everyone, and take place in casual settings like pubs and coffeehouses across the country.
Science cafés emphasize audience participation in the lively discussion of a topic.
What are the goals of the Notre Dame-South Bend Science Café?
- Promote scientific interest and literacy in the South Bend community
- Provide a community outreach opportunity to faculty and graduate students in the sciences
- Introduce new audiences to current topics in science and engineering
Who is the audience?
- Anyone and everyone in the South Bend community.
- Expect a wide range of ages, education levels, and socioeconomic backgrounds.
Where: Notre Dame Downtown
217 South Michigan Street - South Bend, IN 46601 (across the street from the State Theater)
Science Café temporarily suspended...The South Bend Science Café will be suspended for the remainder of 2012 due to scheduling conflicts at our normal venue. We are currently attempting to either work with the Notre Dame-Downtown Center to secure meeting locations for the Spring of 2013 or secure a secondary venue. We plan to have a full lineup of intellectually stimulating speakers for the Spring of 2013 and will keep you updated as our scheduling progresses. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused. Check out this link for another science lecture series on plant ecology being hosted at the Potawatomi Conservatories: http://potawatomiconservatories.blogspot.com/
Semester Schedule: Spring 2012
April 25, 2012 6:30 p.m.
Summary: The Sherlock Holmes series popularized the use of scientific techniques to solve crimes. Join us for a discussion of modern day applications of science and technology in criminal investigations. Specifically, Mr. Eakins will discuss the use of fingerprinting in forensics. He will begin with a brief history of fingerprinting including how it was used by Sherlock Holmes, and then move on to details about modern day applications. Eakins will also present some examples where fingerprints played a key role in homicide cases investigated by the SBPD. The audience is welcome to ask any questions they may have about fingerprinting, crime scene work, or forensics in general.
A One Book, One Michiana Event: http://sjcpl.lib.in.us/onebook/
March 28, 2012 6:30 p.m.
How to Turn Lead into Gold
Speaker: Dr. Micha Kilburn, Director of Education and Outreach for the Joint Institute for Nuclear Astrophysics.
Summary: Carl Sagan once wrote that “We are made of star stuff.” What did he mean by that? How do stars make the “stuff” in our bodies and everything around us? How was the gold in our jewelry made? I will address these questions and more, focusing on how we recreate these stellar conditions in laboratories to better understand the origin of elements. To show how we turn lead into gold (or anything into something smaller) there will be interactive demonstrations.
February 29. 2012 6:30 p.m.
Foraging behavior of small mammals: the difference between finding food and being food
Speaker: Dr. Michael Cramer, Assistant Teaching Professor at Notre Dame and Assistant Director of UNDERC.
Summary: This presentation will investigate how rodents, especially deer mice, make decisions about what to eat and when to eat it, while balancing the risk of becoming food themselves. The talk will outline studies determining preference of mice foraging on maple seeds, and how those decisions change in the perceived presence of a predator. Foraging decisions by other rodents such as porcupines will also be covered.
January 25, 2012 6:30 p.m
A History of Nuclear Weapons with Dr. Michael Wiescher of the Physics Department, Notre Dame. Nuclear weapons have been a part of life on earth for more than 60 years. They have affected political decisions, military planning, and military costs. They have altered the environment and influenced man's way of life in numerous ways. After summarizing the present interest in nuclear weapons and nuclear proliferation, the presentation will focus on the physics of nuclear materials followed by a description of the technical development and the technical challenges associated with the production of nuclear weapons. The history of the US weapons program and its implications for the ecologic and cultural environment will be discussed. The presentation will end with a summary of long-term issues associated with a military nuclear weapon program. >See Flyer
Semester Schedule: Fall 2011
November 30, 2011 6:30 p.m.
Engineering Materials that Coexist/Interact with Biology by Ryan Roeder, Associate Professor, Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering, Bioengineering Graduate Program, University of Notre Dame. This presentation will highlight examples of inert and bioactive materials used in current medical device technology, and discuss the role of biomaterials in the development of therapies involving regenerative medicine.
September 28, 2011 6:30 p.m.
Patents in Biotech: Legal and ethical questions with Dr. Karen Imgrund Deak, Assistant Professor, University of Notre Dame. Prof. Deak will present an overview of the patenting process and legal requirements for obtaining a patent. The bulk of her talk will focus on a specific case that has been in the news recently – AMP v. USPTO – the so-called gene-patenting case.
Semester Schedule, Spring 2011
January 26, 2011 6:30 p.m.
Ecological Restoration and Native Plants with Will Ditzler, President and CEO of JFNew, an ecological consulting and restoration firm based in Northern Indiana.
February 22, 2011 6:30 p.m.
How can we conserve and manage plants and wildlife in a changing climate? with Dr. Jason McLachlan, an Assistant Professor in the Notre Dame Dept. of Biological Science who studies the ecological and evolutionary impact of climate change.
March 31, 2011 6:30 p.m.
A Digital Tour of the Roman Forum with Prof. Krupali Krusche, Notre Dame School of Architecture, and Paul Turner and Ben Keller from Notre Dame’s Academic Technologies team. Prof. Krusche will demonstrate how her Digital Historical Architectural Research and Material Analysis research team (D.H.A.R.M.A.) documents historic monuments and buildings around the world using 3D laser scanners and high resolution digital panorama imagery. The main focus of the presentation will be the recent work of the team in July 2010 to document the Roman Forum — the center of political, religious, commercial, and judicial life in ancient Rome. > See flyer
April 27, 2011 6:30 p.m.
Dr. Thomas Corke, Professor of Engineering in the Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering Department, will present Aerodynamics and Potential of Wind Power Generation. Wind energy is playing an ever increasing world-wide role as a renewable energy source. Because of its intermittent nature, wind energy presents significant challenges before becoming a completely reliable utility. To address such challenges, a "Laboratory for Enhanced Wind Energy Design (eWiND)" has been established as part of FlowPAC. The mission of the laboratory is to apply flow control technology to wind turbines to enhance their performance and reliability as a renewable energy source. The application of strategic aerodynamic control has the potential to increase the energy capture by wind turbines by up to 20 percent.
Podcasts of Science Café Speakers
Some presentations of Science Café are recorded and available as podcasts on iTunes U. Find the Science Café icon once iTunes opens up, then enter a search for Science Café or look for us under "What's New."
Semester Schedule, Fall 2010
Café’s are held on the last Wednesday of every month starting at 6:30 pm unless otherwise noted.
September 29, 2010 6:30 p.m.
Aging Successfully with Prof. Cindy Bergeman, Dept. of Psychology
October 27, 2010 6:30 p.m.
How climate change modeling works with Prof. Edward Bensman, Dept. of Civil Engineering and Geological Sciences
November 10, 2010 6:30 p.m.
The Economics of Climate Change with Prof. Richard Jensen, Dept. of Economics.
December 15, 2010 6:30 p.m.
Why You Should Care about Asian Carp with Prof. David Lodge, Dept. of Biological Sciences.
Nano Tech with Dean Gregory Crawford, Notre Dame College of Science
The science Behind Angels & Demons - What's Real and What Isn't with Prof. Michael Hildreth, Dept. of Physics
What is genomics, and how can it help us fight malaria? with Prof. Mike Ferdig, Dept. of Biological Sciences
Biofuels with Prof. Jean Romero Severson, Dept. of Biological Sciences
Climate Change and the managed relocation of species with Prof. Jason MacLachlan and Prof. Jessica Hellmann, Dept of Biological Sciences
Vital Facts about Vittles, a celebration of food with ND Graduate Students Mia Stephen and Christopher J. Patrick, Dept. of Biological Sciences
January 27, 2010
Solving the autism puzzle with Dr. Joshua Diehl, Dept. of Psychology
February 24, 2010
Nova Now Video Series with ND Graduate Students Mia Stephen & Christopher J. Patrick, Dept. of Biological Sciences
March 31, 2010
Fish food for thought: The link between sea monkeys and the seafood in your supermarket with Prof. Gary Belovsky, Dept. of Biological Sciences