Dr. Meg Smith from UNG made her debut talk at the Dahlonega Science Cafe with a very entertaining and informative talk about parasites. We learned many things about zombies, medicine, survival, food and reproduction in the parasite world!
Dr. Nancy Dalman from UNG talked about ocean dead zones, what they are, why they occur and what can be done about them. This was a very informative talk about a growing problem with more than 400 dead zones identified in Earth's oceans.
Our speaker, Greg Feiden from UNG, talked about Life around a Red Dwarf! New exoplanets are being discovered almost daily - many around red dwarfs. In this talk Greg discussed why astronomers are so focused on searching for planets around red dwarfs, whether planets around red dwarfs could support life, and what the future holds for providing real answers to these questions.
How life began is arguably one of the most intriguing questions of our time. The Center for Chemical Evolution, an NSF/NASA research center based at Georgia Tech, is one of the organizations seeking to understand how chemistry could give rise to life. Our speaker, Chris Parsons from the Center for Chemical Evolution at Georgia Tech, presented a brief discussion of the underpinning philosophy steering the CCE’s animation development as well as screenings of three Stated Clearly animations. Attendees provided feedback on the animations to better understand their educational efficacy. This was a different kind of talk for our Cafe, but not only informative, but interesting! Thanks to all those who turned out.
Chris Seminack from UNG talked about the erosional and depositional features that hurricanes and intense storms leave behind on barrier islands, as well as how coastal geologists study the geologic legacy of ancient intense storms.
Dr Jamie Mitchem talked about the science of climate change and its impacts, including important economic, political, psychological, and moral impacts of living on a warming planet. This talk was great for clarifying some concepts and provided lots of decisive evidence supporting the science of climate change.
Dr. Nancy Dalman from UNG talked about the deep sea, which has the highest biodiversity and some of the longest living and largest animals of any habitat on the planet. At tonight's talk Dr. Dalman took us on a journey to the deep to learn about the past, present and future of deep – sea research and to learn about the anatomical, physiological and ecological mechanisms deep sea animals use to live in this environment.
On April 17 Shozo Yokoyama, the Asa G. Candler Professor of Biology at Emory University, spoke on All Creatures Conspicuous and Invisible. He spoke on the molecular genetics and evolution of color vision of various animals. He discussed a wide range of animals with various visual systems, which include trichromatic color vision, red-green color blindness, UV vision, and infrared vision, and updated us on what we know about the relationships among genes, vision, and various habitats.
We'd like to thank our speaker, Sonny Mantry, who is a faculty member at the University of North Georgia in the Department of Physics. He received his B.S. degree in physics at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) and his Ph.D. at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). His research is in the field of theoretical particle physics.
Dr. Mantry's talk on the Big Bang and cosmology revealed that the origin, structure, and dynamics of our universe is far more interesting than what our ancestors could have possibly imagined.
Our cafe on March 6 was a great talk by Lesley Simanton-Coogan who is the Planetarium Director and a Lecturer at the University of North Georgia in the Department of Physics. She discussed the upcoming August 21st solar eclipse. Parts of North Georgia are in this narrow path of totality, and North Georgia will not be so close to a total solar eclipse again in over a lifetime. She explained how Einstein's theory of relativity was confirmed during eclipses early in the 1900's.