Downtown Science Café @ Magpie's Gourmet Pizza

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Series Title: Women in Science: From Pioneers to the Present

Women have done groundbreaking research in many fields of science. However, in the past they did not always receive the recognition they deserved. Fortunately, women have pushed hard for equality, and social norms in the United States have shifted. Today female researchers do outstanding work in every field of science, and their contributions rank on an equal footing with male researchers. This series features leading women researchers from the University of Arizona, women who work in a range of different fields. Each presenter will also reference a female researcher who came before them in their field, women who pioneered the way at a time when few women were able to pursue a career in scientific research.



Fall 2018 Science Café Presenters:

Tuesday, September 18, 2018 at 6:00PM

Tree Rings Reveal Earth's Past

Dr. Lynn CarterPresenter: Valerie Trouet, Associate Professor, Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research, University of Arizona

Historic Researcher-- Florence Hawley

Scientists who study tree rings have transformed our understanding of forest ecology, climate history, and archeology. This branch of science, called dendrochronology, was first established at the University of Arizona where the Laboratory for Tree-Ring Research was founded in 1937. Dr. Trouet’s Café will explore the ways that we use tree-ring science to understand recent climate extremes such as hurricanes, the California drought, and wildfires. Her presentation will also introduce Florence Hawley, a dendrochronology pioneer. Hawley was the first to apply tree-ring research in the eastern United States, and her legacy informs much of the research happening today.

Coming Soon: Valerie Trouet's Science Café Talk

Tuesday, October 16, 2018 at 6:00PM

The Race for Ground Water - A Shrinking Resource

Dr. Alfred McEwenPresenter: Jen McIntosh, Professor & UA Distinguished Scholar, Hydrology and Atmospheric Sciences, University of Arizona

Historic Researcher-- Dr. Barbara Sherwood-Lollar

All over the world, vast stores of water called “groundwater” lie deep below the surface. However, those groundwater supplies are shrinking rapidly, pumped out from the ‘top down’ for human consumption, and from the ‘bottom up’ by the energy industry when it uses huge quantities of water for extraction of oil and gas. On every continent, humans are consuming groundwater resources faster than they are being replenished. In this Café, Dr. McIntosh will discuss the shrinking supply and intense competition for remaining deep groundwater resources in the United States. The talk will also highlight a prominent scientist, Dr. Barbara Sherwood-Lollar from the University of Toronto, who discovered deep, billion-year-old water resources in the earth’s crust and the microbial life that lives there. Dr. Sherwood-Lollar inspires Dr. McIntosh own career as a hydrogeologist.

Coming Soon: Jen McIntosh's Science Café Talk


Tuesday, November 20, 2018 at 6:00PM

Life Beyond Earth: The Science of Astrobiology

Bashar RizkPresenter: Betul Kacar, Nasa Early Career Fellow, Assistant Professor, Department of Molecular & Cellular Biology and Astronomy, University of Arizona

Historic Researcher: Lynn Margulis

Only one history of life has been recorded on our planet, but can we resurrect essential components of our planet's biological past? Is life a result of a fluke accident? What is the likelihood of life occurring elsewhere in the Universe? In this talk I will describe how my group uses molecular tools to unravel the conditions of our ancient planet and to explore life's possible existence elsewhere in the Universe. I will also discuss how the contributions of Lynn Margulis, a visionary biologist, impacted our understanding of the origins of complex life and astrobiology.

Coming Soon: Betul Kacar's Science Café Talk


Tuesday, December 11, 2018 at 6:00PM

Seeing Back in Time: How Gravity Bends Light to Create a Natural Telescope in Space

Tod LauerPresenter: Brenda Frye, Assistant Professor, Steward Observatory, University of Arizona

Historic Researcher: Vera Rubin

Gravity can bend light, just like a lens. This phenomenon is called "gravitational lensing." When astronomers analyze light from distant stars and galaxies, they can use gravitational lensing to magnify the galaxy image sizes, rather like looking through a microscope. In this Cafe, Dr. Frye will talk about her research that uses gravitational lensing to understand how galaxies – like our own Milky Way galaxy – form, grow, and evolve. In addition, Dr. Frye will talk about the research of pioneering astronomer Vera Rubin who made major discoveries that were not fully appreciated during her lifetime.

Coming Soon: Brenda Frye's Science Café Talk


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