Joe Palca http://tpr.org en The Scientist Who Makes Stars On Earth http://tpr.org/post/scientist-who-makes-stars-earth Transcript <p>AUDIE CORNISH, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Audie Cornish.<p>On the outskirts of Albuquerque, New Mexico, scientists are doing something astonishing. They're creating a white dwarf star - not a whole star but enough of one to study in minute detail. Thu, 06 Mar 2014 21:16:00 +0000 Joe Palca 27820 at http://tpr.org To Clean Drinking Water, All You Need Is A Stick http://tpr.org/post/clean-drinking-water-all-you-need-stick Removing all the dangerous bacteria from drinking water would have enormous health benefits for people around the world.<p>The technologies exist for doing that, but there's a problem: cost.<p>Now a scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology thinks he's on to a much less expensive way to clean up water.<p>MIT's <a href="http://meche.mit.edu/people/?id=279">Rohit Karnik</a> is a mechanical engineer who works on water technologies. He says it's relatively easy to make membranes that can filter the bacteria out of water. Wed, 05 Mar 2014 22:14:00 +0000 Joe Palca 27779 at http://tpr.org To Clean Drinking Water, All You Need Is A Stick NASA's On Alert For Big Scary Asteroids. What About Smaller Ones? http://tpr.org/post/nasas-alert-big-scary-asteroids-what-about-smaller-ones <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XLnhXFheo5U</p> Fri, 14 Feb 2014 23:12:00 +0000 Joe Palca 26765 at http://tpr.org Inexpensive Aquarium Bubbler Saves Preemies' Lives http://tpr.org/post/inexpensive-aquarium-bubbler-saves-preemies-lives <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B0rGMRdZiOY</p> Mon, 03 Feb 2014 19:33:00 +0000 Joe Palca 26106 at http://tpr.org Inexpensive Aquarium Bubbler Saves Preemies' Lives Scientists Come Close To Finding True Magnetic Monopole http://tpr.org/post/scientists-come-close-finding-true-magnetic-monopole Transcript <p>DAVID GREENE, HOST: <p>Scientists may have filled in a gap in one the fundamental theories of physics. We've always been told that magnets have two poles, north and south. But theory suggests there should be something called a magnetic monopole, a magnet that has either a north pole or a south pole but not both of them. So far no one has found this elusive magnetic monopole.<p>As part of his project, Joe's Big Idea, NPR's Joe Palca brings us the story of scientists at Amherst College in Massachusetts. They have created a synthetic magnetic monopole. Fri, 31 Jan 2014 10:04:00 +0000 Joe Palca 25957 at http://tpr.org After Hibernation, Rosetta Seeks Its Stone http://tpr.org/post/after-hibernation-rosetta-seeks-its-stone Transcript <p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>The European Space Agency's Rosetta mission is back in business. For the past 31 months, the spacecraft has effectively been asleep. Most of its instruments were shut off to save energy, including the radio for communicating with Earth. Mission managers can now start preparing Rosetta for a rendezvous with a comet later this year. NPR's Joe Palca has more.<p>JOE PALCA, BYLINE: Rosetta went into hibernation in June 2011. Tue, 21 Jan 2014 22:40:00 +0000 Joe Palca 25426 at http://tpr.org Peter Stone Can't Get Enough Of Robots Playing Soccer http://tpr.org/post/peter-stone-cant-get-enough-robots-playing-soccer Transcript <p>RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST: <p>And later this year, billions of people around the world will become obsessed by sounds like this.<p>(SOUNDBITE OF CHEERING)<p>UNIDENTIFIED MAN: (Foreign language spoken)<p>MONTAGNE: The World Cup, the pinnacle of soccer, starts this June, in Brazil. NPR science correspondent Joe Palca will be one of those obsessed, screaming fans. It's not often Joe gets to do a story that mixes science and soccer, but as part of his new project, Joe's Big Idea, he found a computer scientist who actually studies soccer using robots as players. Wed, 15 Jan 2014 10:17:00 +0000 Joe Palca 25103 at http://tpr.org Saving Babies' Lives Starts With Aquarium Pumps And Ingenuity http://tpr.org/post/saving-babies-lives-starts-aquarium-pumps-and-ingenuity <p>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B0rGMRdZiOY</p> Sat, 04 Jan 2014 13:52:00 +0000 Joe Palca 24552 at http://tpr.org Saving Babies' Lives Starts With Aquarium Pumps And Ingenuity Researchers Create New 'Memory' Metals That Could Improve Safety http://tpr.org/post/researchers-create-new-memory-metals-could-improve-safety Some metal alloys will "remember" a shape when you heat them to the same temperature they were originally shaped at. So a straight wire made from one of these "shape memory alloys" might change back into a spring when heated, or vice versa. But the alloys that exist today change shape at low temperatures. Materials scientists at Sandia National Laboratory have developed new alloys that don't change shape until they reach hundreds of degrees, opening the door to thousands of new applications. Wed, 01 Jan 2014 21:02:00 +0000 Joe Palca 24415 at http://tpr.org To Make Intersections Smarter, We Need Cars To Be Smarter, Too http://tpr.org/post/make-intersections-smarter-we-need-cars-be-smarter-too Transcript <p>ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST: <p>From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.<p>Car companies have already begun to design cars that can drive themselves. But to make these smart cars really useful, they'll also need smart roads. As part of his series, "Joe's Big Idea," NPR science correspondent Joe Palca has this story about some computer scientists who were designing a smart traffic intersection. How smart? Fri, 27 Dec 2013 21:21:00 +0000 Joe Palca 24217 at http://tpr.org