Ideas and Discoveries
Dramatic new portrait helps define Milky Way’s shape, contents
March 20, 2014
Using more than 2 million images collected by NASA’s orbiting Spitzer Space Telescope, a team of Wisconsin scientists has stitched together a dramatic 360-degree portrait of the Milky Way, providing new details of our galaxy’s structure and contents.
School of Nursing part of Nurses for Wisconsin Initiative
Feb. 18, 2014
Four University of Wisconsin System nursing programs, including the UW-Madison School of Nursing, are offering new fellowship and loan forgiveness programs to encourage nurses to pursue doctoral degrees or postdoctoral training and assume nurse educator positions in Wisconsin.
What’s with sloths’ dangerous bathroom breaks? Maybe hunger
Jan. 24, 2014
For the three-toed sloth, a trip to the restroom is no rest at all. It's a long, slow descent into mortal danger from the safety of home among the upper branches of the forest.
Wisconsin researchers identify key pathway for plant cell growth
Jan. 23, 2014
For plants, the only way to grow is for cells to expand. Unlike animals, cell division in plants happens only within a tiny region of the root and stem apex, making cell expansion the critical path to increased stature.
A fifth year of record milk production helped Wisconsin farmers generate near-record income
Jan. 22, 2014
Wisconsin farmers didn't have their best year ever in 2013, but they didn't miss it by much.
Renewable chemical ready for biofuels scale-up
Jan. 16, 2014
Using a plant-derived chemical, University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers have developed a process for creating a concentrated stream of sugars that’s ripe with possibility for biofuels.
Fish forced into the ‘foraging arena’ when lakes lose their trees
Jan. 15, 2014
In attempts to predict what climate change will mean for life in lakes, scientists have mainly focused on two things: the temperature of the water and the amount of oxygen dissolved in it. But a new study from University of Wisconsin researchers is speaking for the trees - specifically, the dead ones that have toppled into a lake's near shore waters.
Even or odd: no easy feat for the mind
Dec. 20, 2013
Even scientists are fond of thinking of the human brain as a computer, following sets of rules to communicate, make decisions and find a meal.
Makerspace is part clubhouse, part business incubator and all workshop
Dec. 17, 2013
At Sector67, a “makerspace” on Madison’s East Side, you never know what will walk through the orange door. Today, a University of Wisconsin-Madison student wants to mold foam and plastic into a custom-fit back for a backpack.
IceCube named 2013 Breakthrough of the Year for neutrino discovery
Dec. 13, 2013
Less than one month after reporting the first evidence for cosmic neutrinos, the IceCube project received the 2013 Breakthrough of the Year award from the British magazine Physics World.
Fledgling supernova remnant reveals neutron star's secrets
Dec. 4, 2013
With the help of NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and the Australia Telescope Compact Array, an international team of astronomers has identified the glowing wreck of a star that exploded a mere 2,500 years ago — the blink of an eye in astronomical terms.
Birchbark canoe launch celebrates collaborative art and culture
Nov. 27, 2013
As Wayne Valliere prepared to launch a traditional birchbark canoe into the choppy waters of Lake Mendota on Thursday, Nov. 21, members of the crowd scanned the horizon. The fog on the lake hid the modern water tower, houses and power lines on the far shore.
University Research Park: A business incubator that is “changing the world”
Nov. 15, 2013
University Research Park and the MG&E Innovation Center on its campus were cited yesterday, November 15, by Forbes Magazine as among the top breeding grounds for compelling high-tech startups.
Biomanufacturing center takes central role in developing stem-cell therapies
Oct. 17, 2013
Developing a new drug takes enormous amounts of time, money and skill, but the bar is even higher for a promising stem-cell therapy. Many types of cells derived from these ultra-flexible parent cells are moving toward the market, but the very quality that makes stem cells so valuable also makes them a difficult source of therapeutics.
The sun also flips: 11-year solar cycle wimpy, but peaking
Oct. 16, 2013
In a 3-meter diameter hollow aluminum sphere, Cary Forest, a University of Wisconsin-Madison physics professor, is stirring and heating plasmas to 500,000 degrees Fahrenheit to experimentally mimic the magnetic field-inducing cosmic dynamos at the heart of planets, stars and other celestial bodies.
The chemistry of color: Energy researcher develops dye-based solar cells
Oct. 11, 2013
University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers working at the intersection of basic and applied science focus on key factors like cost, environmental impacts ... and sometimes, color.
A shot of anxiety and the world stinks
Sept. 24, 2013
Researchers using powerful new brain imaging technologies are revealing how anxiety or stress can rewire the brain, linking centers of emotion and olfactory processing, to make typically benign smells malodorous.
Micro-cameras flex their way into the future of imaging
Sept. 20, 2013
Imagine sticking a thin sheet of microscopic cameras to the surface of a car to provide a rear-view image, or wrapping that sheet around a pole to provide 360-degree surveillance of an intersection under construction.
Massive storm pulls water and ammonia ices from Saturn’s depths
Sept. 3, 2013
Now, thanks to near-infrared spectral measurements taken by NASA’s Cassini orbiter and analysis of near-infrared color signatures by researchers at UW-Madison, Saturn’s superstorm is helping scientists flesh out a picture of the composition of the planet’s atmosphere at depths typically obscured by a thick high-altitude haze.
Study shows mindfulness training can help reduce teacher stress and burnout
Aug. 28, 2013
Teachers who practice "mindfulness" are better able to reduce their own levels of stress and prevent burnout, according to a new study conducted by the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds (CIHM) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Waisman Center.