engineering

#384      22 min 09 sec
Exploring the impact of city lights on birds, and building better detergents

Mitchell Nothling
Anne Aulsebrook

In our annual PhD episode, we chat with two young researchers on their diverse investigations. We hear from bioscientist Anne Aulsebrook, who is looking at how urban lighting and light pollution is impacting the health and behaviour of wild birds that make their home in our cities. We also speak to chemical engineer Mitchell Nothling about his research into how enzymes like those found in our digestive systems could be harnessed to create sustainable and more efficient detergents. Presented by Dr Andi Horvath.

#375      30 min 55 sec
Ear to the ground: Preparing for and recovering from earthquakes

Assoc Prof Mark Quigley

Earthquake researcher Assoc Prof Mark Quigley explains the lessons learned from recent major earthquakes into how to better prepare regions at risk, the value of strong science communication to affected populations during crisis, and the importance of developing appropriate building codes in anticipation of the Next Big One. Presented by Dr Andi Horvath.

#363      29 min 16 sec
The social life of algorithms: Shaping, and being shaped by, our world

Prof Paul Dourish

Informatics researcher Professor Paul Dourish explains how algorithms, as more than mere technical objects, guide our social lives and organization, and are themselves evolving products of human social actions. Presented by Dr Andi Horvath.

#001      19 min 47 sec
Introducing a new podcast: In Pursuit -- Episode 1, Thought Controlled Futures

Dr Tom Oxley
Dr Nick Opie

Up Close science host Dr Andi Horvath presents the first installment of a new podcast, In Pursuit. In this episode, Thought Controlled Futures, we talk to the people behind revolutionary technologies enabling people to control movement and manipulate objects using their thoughts alone. In particular, we take a look at the stentrode, a metal scaffold implanted in a blood vessel, that allows brain activity to be recorded and commands generated to control a full-body exoskeleton.

#341      27 min 00 sec
Fume with a view: Consumer products and your indoor air quality

Prof Anne Steinemann

Civil and environmental engineer Prof Anne Steinemann outlines the causes and consequences of poor indoor air quality, and in particular the potentially hazardous fumes generated by home cleaning and personal care products. Presented by Dr Andi Horvath.

#339      32 min 38 sec
Machine politics: Electronic voting and the persistent doubts about its integrity

Dr J Alex Halderman
Dr Vanessa Teague

Alex Halderman and Vanessa Teague, security experts in electronic and internet voting, argue that despite the speed and efficiency promises of e-balloting, it has yet to convincingly deliver the privacy, reliability and vote integrity that the democratic process requires and that voters expect. Presented by Elisabeth Lopez.

#312      26 min 19 sec
Screening along the spectrum: The search for a genetic test for autism

Prof Chris Pantelis
Prof Stan Skafidas

Neuropsychiatrist Prof Chris Pantelis and neural engineering researcher Prof Stan Skafidas discuss the potential for the use of genetics to improve the diagnosis of autism. Presented by Dr Shane Huntington.

#311      26 min 18 sec
Compound benefits: Creating new materials to aid cleaner energy generation

Prof David Sholl

Materials scientist Prof David Sholl explains how new hi-tech metal hydrides and metal-organic frameworks can be used to increase the efficiency of nuclear power stations and  to capture carbon dioxide emissions in coal-fired power plants. Presented by Dr Shane Huntington.

#306      24 min 10 sec
Organs on a chip: How 3D models of living tissue are changing biomedical research

Prof Donald Ingber

Bioengineer Prof Donald Ingber discusses how three-dimensional models of living human organs can advance our understanding of human physiology in ways that animal models can’t. Presented by Dr Dyani Lewis.

#296      27 min 16 sec
Cardiac quest: Insights from simulating the heart’s geometry and function

Prof Edmund Crampin

Computational biologist Prof Edmund Crampin examines the challenges of creating a computational model of the human heart, and discusses what scientists have learned about the actual organ from this enterprise. Presented by Dr Shane Huntington.