Talk Archives

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Last Call at the Oasis: Will There Be Enough Water for the 21st Century?

Last Call at the Oasis: Will There Be Enough Water for the 21st Century?

By Dr. Jay Famiglietti

Without water, life cannot exist. Yet, our most precious resource faces major threats which are pushing it to the brink of depletion in many regions. Dr. Jay Famiglietti explores how climate change and population growth affect the way water is replenished.

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79
Black Swans & the U.S. Future: Building Sustainable & Resilient Societies

Black Swans & the U.S. Future: Building Sustainable & Resilient Societies

By Dr. David Orr

‘Black Swans’ are infrequent and unpredictable events that can drive change in both human and natural systems. What qualities make societies resilient and sustainable in the face of environmental Black Swans? How can we prepare for, absorb, and recover from the unpredictable disruptions from climate-related ecological change?

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78
Life on Europa? Exploring Jupiter’s Icy Moon

Life on Europa? Exploring Jupiter’s Icy Moon

By Dr. Britney Schmidt

Do you ever wonder about the possibility of life on other planets? Evidence of a shallow lake of liquid water on Europa, one of Jupiter’s moons, suggests the potential for life may exist within our solar system. Dr. Schmidt takes us on a journey that examines some essential environmental conditions necessary to support life, and how these conditions may arise on other planets.

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77
From Fracking to the 40 Acres: Energy Challenges for UT, Texas, and the World

From Fracking to the 40 Acres: Energy Challenges for UT, Texas, and the World

By Dr. Michael Webber

Energy is important to every aspect of our lives. What are the energy challenges faced in Texas and across the globe? Dr. Michael Webber shares how energy consumption has changed worlwide over the years and what challenges we will face in the future.

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76
Dark Energy, Explosions & Zombie Stars

Dark Energy, Explosions & Zombie Stars

By Dr. Andrew Howell

What do you see when you look at the night sky? If you are Dr. Howell and his team, you discover a supernova within hours of its explosion (a rare feat) and use it to help measure the history of the expansion of the universe and the dark energy causing it to accelerate. Explore supernovas, dark energy, and zombie stars with Dr. Howell, and hear how learning more about these phenomena helps us understand our universe.

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75
Your Eye, My Eye, and the Eye of the Aye-Aye: Evolution of Human Vision from 65 Million Years Ago to the Present

Your Eye, My Eye, and the Eye of the Aye-Aye: Evolution of Human Vision from 65 Million Years Ago to the Present

By Dr. Christopher Kirk

How did humans come to have the best eyesight of any living mammal? Dr. Kirk explains how his research related to the evolution of primate sensory systems helps us understand human visual adaptations in the larger context of primate evolution.

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74
Astronauts, Robots, & Rocks: Preparing for Geological Planetary Exploration

Astronauts, Robots, & Rocks: Preparing for Geological Planetary Exploration

By Dr. Mark Helper

Imagine yourself as a scientist visiting a research site on the moon for the first time, using new ways to understand the unexplored territory around you. Dr. Helper shares the training of astronauts to do geological field work, and of work with NASA roboticists at a large Canadian impact crater to test the use of robots as an aid to human planetary exploration.

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73
Building Memories for Tomorrow: How Our Brains Predict Our Futures

Building Memories for Tomorrow: How Our Brains Predict Our Futures

By Dr. Allison Preston

Our memories are the essence of who we are. But our memories are not merely a record of the past, rather our memories are a guide to both the present and the future. Dr. Alison Preston explores how the human brain builds memories that can be used to anticipate future events.

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72
Creative Conservation in a Changing Climate

Creative Conservation in a Changing Climate

By Dr. Camille Parmesan

Professor Parmesan invites you to look at what current impacts of rapid climate change has on wildlife, and explores innovative solutions to animal and plant conservation in the 21st century.

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71
Dinosaurs in Living Color

Dinosaurs in Living Color

By Dr. Julia Clarke

Dr. Julia Clarke brings the study of dinosaurs to life and explore questions of where birds fit in the paleontological record. Clarke will present recent research and discoveries that enable scientists to paint a vibrant picture of what these animals looked like, compare them with living ancestors, and explain how everything you knew about dinosaurs may be wrong.

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