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$1.7 million x-ray microscope to unleash WSU materials research

Aurora Clark
Aurora Clark

When it arrives on campus this October, a powerful new $1.7 million x-ray microscope will help Washington State University scientists develop specialized materials for technologies such as self-healing roads, printable batteries and super-efficient solar cells.

The unique microscope can create three-dimensional models of a material’s interior down to 50 nanometer resolution. Such precision will enable researchers across the university to design more efficient and powerful components for technologies ranging from batteries and solar cells to drug delivery methods that use nanoparticles to target cancerous tumors. It also will provide faculty a competitive advantage when applying for future research grants.

“In order to make high performance materials better or more versatile, you need to be able to characterize and control the arrangements of atoms inside them,” said Aurora Clark, professor of chemistry and principal investigator for the Xradia Ultra program. “Previously, WSU scientists had to go somewhere like the Argonne National Laboratory outside of Chicago to do the kind of imaging we will now be able to do in-house.”

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WSU News


Republican Handel wins Georgia House election

Republican Karen Handel won a nationally watched congressional election Tuesday in Georgia, and she thanked President Donald Trump after she avoided an upset that would have rocked Washington ahead of the 2018 midterm elections.

Cornell Clayton

Both U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Washington State University professor of political science Cornell Clayton said it’s too early to tell what the results of the election will mean for the 2018 midterm elections.

Clayton, the Thomas S. Foley distinguished professor at WSU’s Foley Institute for Public Policy and Public Service, said the race became symbolic for both parties but may not be a bellwether for the 2018 midterm elections.

“I think it was overhyped,” Clayton said.

The fact that it was close in a traditionally Republican district could mean generic GOP candidates will have trouble next year, he said. On the other hand, the fact that a Democrat couldn’t win in a swing district where Trump didn’t do so well might mean 2018 won’t be a wave election.

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The Spokesman-Review

Axon Announces Intent to Partner with Washington State University to Further Groundbreaking Research on Police-Community Interactions

Washington State University Researchers Offer First Analyses of Use of Force in Body-Worn Camera Video

At the annual Axon Accelerate User Conference, Axon (Nasdaq: AAXN), the global leader in connected law enforcement technologies, and Washington State University (WSU) announced their intent to form a strategic partnership for further research that may improve law enforcement training and police-community relations.

David Makin

In a set of landmark studies published in 2017, researchers at WSU’s new Complex Social Interaction (CSI) laboratory, led by Dr. David Makin, assistant professor of Criminal Justice and Criminology, have analyzed body-worn camera footage to gain a more thorough and complete understanding of police use of force and police-community interaction. To aid the CSI team in their ongoing research, Axon will provide the researchers with body-worn cameras and access to its digital evidence management solution,, free of charge.

The donated technology will allow researchers to generate their own research footage via cadets enrolled in WSU’s Police Corps program and analyze it along with other data that local agencies choose to share with them. This partnership will provide them with the necessary tools and information for WSU to develop new algorithms for understanding use of force videos. » More …

‘When you close your eyes and think of Clark County’

Diverse group shares what Clark County, Washington, is to them and how it shaped their lives.

The exhibit, “I Am Clark County,” is an oral examination of Clark County that looks at 12 unique lives. The subjects—or “narrators” as they are called by their interviewers—represent a diverse group through a variety of religions, races, jobs, ages and personal histories.

Donna SinclairThe exhibit is the brainchild of Donna Sinclair, instructor of history at Washington State University Vancouver. Sinclair laid the groundwork for the exhibit during WSU Vancouver’s spring semester by teaching a group of her history students how to interview and put together an exhibit.

The goal, as Sinclair describes it, was to talk with “ordinary Clark County citizens. Through the lens of their experience we can learn something about this place,” she said.

The physical exhibit itself features a descriptive poster of each subject, with various aspects of their lives highlighted, an assortment of graphics of both the subject and things pertaining to their life and three to five ways the subjects identify themselves. Next to each poster, hanging on the wall with headphones, are the interviews.

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The Reflector

African farmers’ kids conquer the marshmallow test

Barry Hewlett
Barry Hewlett

Children of Nso farmers in Cameroon know how to master the marshmallow test, which has tempted away the self-control of Western kids for decades. In a direct comparison on this delayed gratification task, Cameroonian youngsters leave middle-class German children in the dust when challenged to resist a reachable treat while waiting for another goodie, a new study finds.

While Nso values and parenting techniques generally characterize small-scale farming populations, especially in Africa, hunter-gatherers are another story, says anthropologist Barry Hewlett of Washington State University in Vancouver. Traditional hunter-gatherer groups value individual freedom and consider everyone to be relatively equal, regardless of age. Parents usually don’t tell their kids what to do, and children show little deference to parents and elders.

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Science News