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College of Arts and Sciences Faculty

Researchers estimate magma under supervolcano

Washington State University researchers "spike" a Yellowstone hot spring with deuterium, a stable isotope, to calculate water and heat flowing out of the springs and estimate how fast magma is recharging beneath the Yellowstone supervolcano. The material had no environmental impact and was done with a permit from the National Park ServiceWSU geologists have found a new way to estimate how fast magma is recharging beneath the Yellowstone supervolcano.

Scientists now have a better understanding of a key factor of what’s underneath the massive caldera: a pool of basalt magma continually recharging the system.

“It is the coal in the furnace that’s » More …

Mellon Foundation funds digital archiving project

logo imageThe Andrew W. Mellon Foundation awarded $42,000 to migrate the Electronic Literature Organization’s (ELO) archives to an open-source repository system that ensures their preservation and public accessibility. Much of the archiving and documentation will take place at WSU Vancouver’s Electronic Literature Lab, under the leadership of Professor Dene Grigar, director of the lab.

WSU Vancouver is the current sponsoring institution for » More …

Physics research heads to International Space Station

Rocket on lauchpad in the distance, seen against setting sunWSU physicists have a new laboratory in outer space. On May 20, the Cold Atom Laboratory (CAL), a remotely operated research platform, blasted off for the International Space Station (ISS) where it will be used by researchers to probe quantum phenomena that would be impossible to observe on Earth.

Professor Peter Engels and graduate student Maren Mossman will use CAL remotely » More …

Jockers named next CAS dean

Professor at desk with booksWorld-renowned literary scholar and data scientist Matthew Jockers has been named as the next dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.

“Dr. Jockers has the perfect skill set to lead the next chapter in the evolution of the College of Arts and Sciences,” WSU Provost Dan Bernardo said. “He has extensive industry experience and possesses a strong record of scholarly » More …

Remembering sociology pioneer James Short

Professor in office, leaning on a chair.James F. Short Jr., professor emeritus of sociology and one of Washington State University’s longest-serving and most distinguished faculty members, passed away on May 13, 2018, at the age of 93.

Nationally respected for his expertise and understanding of group dynamics and sociological risk factors, his groundbreaking research into the conditions under which violence, delinquency, and crime occur helped to shape the field of modern sociology and enabled researchers to more fully explore how organizations of all kinds work together. He was among the pioneers in developing robust methodology » More …

Benedict honored by WSU Libraries for student engagement

award winner with two colleagesLeah Benedict, clinical assistant professor of English, received 2018 WSU Libraries’ Excellence Award for her dedication to introducing students to the many facets of library research.

Through assignments based on everything from reels of mircrofilm to special archive materials to modern sales brochures, Benedict regularly challenges her students to look more deeply at the constructed nature of knowledge and » More …

North America’s first electron microscope

Composite image of the restored microscope and the researchers' notebookEarly in the 20th century, a five-foot-tall golden microscope on the Washington State University campus was the most powerful imaging device on the continent. Despite its scientific significance, it has been largely lost from the pages of history.

“Europe’s first electron microscope earned its inventors a Nobel prize and is on display at the Deutsches Museum, the world’s largest museum of science and technology, while nobody really knows about our instrument.” said Michael Knoblauch, biology professor and director of WSU’s Franceschi Microscopy and Imaging Center. “Something of this significance should be in the Smithsonian.” » More …

Hydrologist earns NSF CAREER award

NSF logo.Kevan Moffett, assistant professor of environmental hydrology at WSU Vancouver, has earned a prestigious Faculty Early Career Development Program award from the National Science Foundation. Highly competitive, ‘CAREER’ awards emphasize the importance of developing academic careers in which the excitement of research is enhanced by inspired teaching and dissemination of new knowledge.

Moffett’s research explores how the urban water cycle interacts with the heat generated by urban areas. Most hydrological research takes place » More …

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