Published by the Students of Johns Hopkins since 1896
January 27, 2021

Science & Technology



COURTESY OF EDA INCEKARA
The GIS includes information about every tree on Homewood Campus.

Groundskeeping at Homewood uses advanced tech

The outdoor spaces of the University’s nearly 140-acre Homewood Campus are maintained by a team of 15 groundskeepers, overseen by Grounds Manager John Beauchamp. Together, they care for everything from the flower beds and hedges, to the quads and small forested areas, and even the brick sidewalks, one of the unique landscape features established after a donation to Hopkins Grounds Services nearly two decades ago. 


Organic vegetables and fruits are a marketing ploy

The appeal of organic food is rooted in the common misconception that equates natural production with ethical production. For me, organic food is simply a marketing ploy to convince consumers to purchase more expensive food.


COURTESY OF PREETHI KALIAPPAN 
Hopkins students engaged in sustainability activities before the school year began.

Blue Jays go green for a sustainable Hopkins

Sustainability is an important measure to stop the progression of negative changes to the environment, since it looks to protect the natural environment of the Earth and the health of its inhabitants. Many members of the Hopkins community are particularly passionate and active about this issue. 


Public domain
Mouse models are often used to approximate human medical responses.

EPA funds research for alternatives to animal testing

Animal models, especially mice, are customarily used to study disease pathology, but it is a somewhat controversial practice in terms of cost, ethical aspects and predictivity for humans. The Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing (CAAT) in the Bloomberg School of Public Health is a part of the effort to move away from vertebrate medical research. To that end, they recently received a grant of almost $850,000 from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).



Public domain
In 1967, the APL captured the first color photo of the earth from space.

APL took first color photo of the earth 52 years ago

Since it marks the 50th anniversary of the moon landing, 2019 has prompted many to look back on the journey to explore what lies beyond planet Earth. Since the dawn of space exploration, our University’s Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) has been a pioneer of engineering innovative space missions. One of the many feats it has accomplished involved producing the first color image of the full earth on Sept. 20, 1967 — two years before the moon landing.


COURTESY OF KALINA HRISTOVA
The BMMB Lab studies the thermodynamics of biological membranes.

Dialogues in research: Professor Kalina Hristova

Perhaps one would not consider a biological cell membrane a material that can be engineered. But for Kalina Hristova, it is.  Hristova is a professor of materials science and engineering. Broadly, materials scientists research interactions between molecules and study how those interactions contribute to the efficacy of a structure. 


 Public Domain
The new psychedelic center will be the first of its kind in the U.S.

New psychedelic research center to open at Hopkins Bayview campus

Hopkins Medicine is launching a new center to study psychedelics, the first institution of its kind in the U.S. and one of only a few around the world investigating these types of compounds. The new Center for Psychedelic and Consciousness Research, announced on Sept. 4, will support research focusing on the effects of psychedelic drugs on the brain and mental disorders. 


Public Domain
Angappan’s interests are broadly focused on the interior of planets.

Graduate student awarded FINESST grant from NASA

On Aug. 6, Hopkins graduate student Regupathi Angappan was awarded the Future Investigators in NASA Earth and Space Science and Technology (FINESST) grant — a big grant fitting a big project like his. Angappan’s research uses the incredibly weak and “noisy” magnetic field of Mercury to help reveal the planet’s interior structure. 


New student organization reaches for the stars

One of the newest student groups on the Hopkins campus, Students for the Exploration and Development of Space (SEDS) is a club meant to promote student interest in space and provide networking opportunities, project experience and career exploration in any discipline of the field.



Courtesy of Tommi Tenkanen
Tenkanen’s calculations propose that dark matter existed before the Big Bang.

Proposal sheds light on the origins of dark matter

To understand the workings of the ‘body’ of the universe, it is necessary to understand its skeleton: dark matter. Enter Tommi Tenkanen, a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Physics and Astronomy, who recently proposed a mathematical calculation to support the claim that dark matter predates the Big Bang.


CC0 PUBLIC DOMAIN
There are flu clinics for students at the Peabody and Homewood campuses.

Take preventative measures to avoid the flu this season

With flu season almost upon us, one of the best forms of defense is to learn how to recognize and prevent the flu. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), symptoms of the flu typically include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headaches, fatigue and in some cases vomiting and diarrhea. 





Public domain
Trump announced the launch of the U.S. Space Command in August.

Trump's new Space Command launches

This year there has been renewed public interest in the topic of space exploration and development. On Aug. 29, U.S. President Donald Trump announced the launch of the U.S. Space Command. 



Courtesy of Veena Das
Professor Veena Das is a professor and scholar of Indian anthropology.

Social Science Spotlight: Professor Veena Das

It is difficult to neatly pigeonhole Veena Das’ research endeavors. A Kreiger-Eisenhower Professor of Anthropology, Das is a scholar of Indian anthropology, the anthropology of violence and social suffering and ways of producing knowledge.


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