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Archive – April 2012

From May 5 to May 22, geochronologist Prof. Blair Schoene will be spending some time with his dad. What makes this an unusual bonding session is that Schoene will be sharing his father’s expertise with a small group of eager hikers on a trek across the Himalayas, including a highlighted visit to the Annapurna Sanctuary and Kathmandu.
If you registered for the 2012 GeoGrad Reunion, we like to thank you. The department looks forward to welcoming you back to campus for Princeton University’s first departmental reunion hosted by the Graduate School and the Department of Geosciences.
On April 24, Adam Maloof will present at the first-ever TEDx conference, at Cooper Union. Cooper Union is a college in New York City whose mission focuses on the advancement of science and art collaboratively. The conference’s theme “Found in Translation” gives a clue as to why Adam was invited to the conference. In 2010, Maloof and his Earth History research team, along with Professor Frederik Simons, found evidence of tiny red sponge fossils in limestone from South Australia.
The American Society for Microbiology has announced Bess B. Ward, Department of Geosciences Chair, the 2012 Procter & Gamble Award in Applied and Environmental Microbiology laureate. The award recognizes distinguished achievement in research and development in applied and environmental microbiology.
Michael Bender's project centers around the development of a high-precision method for measuring plant photosynthesis and respiration rates in the light under controlled conditions, and the use of this method to investigate fundamental topics in plant physiology.
New research has revealed that some events in Earth's history happened more recently than previously thought. Scientists from the British Geological Survey and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, have refined the data used to determine how much time has passed since a mineral or rock was formed. Professor Blair Schoene stated, "This new determination will not only improve the accuracy of each U-Pb age but ultimately our understanding of events in Earth history."
As New York City was assaulted by an abnormally high tidal wave and the world rapidly began to freeze into a new ice age, laughter erupted in the Frist Campus Center basement. The laughter came from an audience of students, faculty, and community members viewing the 2004 blockbusterThe Day After Tomorrow, a film often criticized by scientists for its unrealistic portrayal of geologic events.
Using a unique half century of data, scientists have determined that a combination of anthropogenic climate change, nitrogen pollution, two severe storms, and heavy logging interacted in a complex way to impact the inner workings of contemporary forests in north eastern United States. The laboratory of Daniel Sigman, professor of geosciences and a PEI associated faculty member, assisted with isotope analysis.
Come to the Geosciences Sophomore Open House, Tuesday, April 3, @ 7:00 P.M. - at Guyot Hall in the Great Hall, near the globe. Come talk with Faculty and Students to see what is exciting about Geosciences. Pizza and soda will be served.