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Gem of An Idea

Computer chips and electronic circuitry made from diamonds? Sounds like just bling, but nanodiamond-based components for microelectronic devices not only are very robust; they’re inexpensive.

Developed by researchers at Vanderbilt University, the devices are made by depositing a thin nanodiamond film on a layer of silicon dioxide and then vacuum-packaging it.

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Program: MESA at CSU Fresno

MESAMathematics, Engineering, Science Achievement (MESA) is a university-based outreach program operating in eight states. MESA strives to provide an opportunity for ethnic minority, low income, and first generation college-bound students to explore college majors and career interests with a group of peers interested in attending college.

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Catching Thieves With Butterflies

The wings of Costa Rica’s beautiful blue morpho butterfly are so iridescent their shimmer can be spotted more than a half mile away. Yet they contain no pigments. Instead, they have nanostructures that reflect and refract wavelengths of light to produce the vivid blue hue.

Researchers at Canada’s Simon Fraser University have developed a printing method that produces nanoholes 1,500 times thinner than a human hair that can, like the morpho’s nanostructures, each trap a single light wave.

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Meet Nathan Gholston: Aerospace Engineer

Swift as a rocket on the field, University of Miami football player Nathan Gholston is aiming for the stars in more ways than one. The senior undergraduate is also studying aerospace engineering, and dreams of one day designing spacecrafts for NASA and starting his own consulting firm, reports The Miami Herald.

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Contest: Spirit of Innovation Challenge

spirit of innovation winnersDeadline for Team Abstracts: Nov. 29, 2011
Registration Fee: None

This annual Spirit of Innovation Challenge from the Conrad Foundation invites high school student teams to use STEM skills to develop the products of tomorrow. Along the way, coaches, world-renowned scientists, engineers and entrepreneurs act as mentors to help turn their ideas into a reality. This year, participants will develop a product idea centered around one of three product categories: Aerospace Exploration, Clean Energy, or Health and Nutrition.

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