Fewer cold snaps: Mangroves head north

Climate change appears to have paved the way for a northward march of mangrove forest along Florida’s Atlantic coast, but not because mean temperatures are rising. Instead a new analysis of satellite images and other data over a 28-year span attributes the dramatic expansion of mangrove to a decline in frequency of days where the temperature dips below minus 4 C (25 F).

Capstone projects help local organizations

This year all 75 seniors in the C.V. Starr Program in Business, Entrepreneurship and Organizations are required to complete a capstone project. They work in teams to help local startups, nonprofilts, and other organizations solve problems or successfully expand operations. The learning is significant on both sides.

New for 2014: a high-tech research greenhouse

With advanced temperature and lighting controls and six separate rooms for research, the University’s new greenhouse on the roof of the freshly renovated Building for Environmental Research and Teaching will make new kinds of plant research possible in 2014. Plants and people are moving in and the final preparations are underway.
Archaeology of College Hill

Digging up the secrets of the Quiet Green

The Front Green, a.k.a. the Quiet Green, was the original pre-Revolutionary War public face of Brown University. Archaeology students have been excavating on the Front Green, searching for evidence of the former President’s House, which stood there from 1770 to 1840.

Bats: Virtually a model of flight

“Virtual Reality Design for Science” is a co-listed class at Brown and RISD that unites artists, designers, computer scientists, and experts in scientific visualization. The goal: to create tools for immersive interaction with scientific data. Test case for the course: the flight mechanics of bats.
Class of 2018

Brown admits 583 early decision applicants

Brown has admitted 583 early decision applicants for the Class of 2018, from a record early decision pool of 3,088 prospective students.
Neuroscience Methods

Optogenetics as good as electrical stimulation

Brown researchers have shown that optogenetics — a technique that uses pulses of visible light to alter the behavior of brain cells — can be as good as or possibly better than the older technique of using small bursts of electrical current. Optogenetics had been used in small rodent models. Research reported in Current Biology has shown that optogenetics works effectively in larger, more complex brains.

Ancient crater may be clue to Moon’s mantle

A massive impact on the Moon about 4 billion years ago left a 2,500-km. crater, among the largest known craters in the solar system. Smaller subsequent impacts left craters within that crater. Comparing the spectra of light reflected from the peaks of those craters may yield clues to the composition of the Moon’s lower crust and mantle — and would have implications for models of how the Moon formed.
School of Public Health

Doing good by doing research in R.I.

The community benefits of public health research are substantial, but they don't always flow from a laboratory. The data gathering is often door-to-door and face-to-face, and the research often involves the very people whose health will be improved by the findings. “It’s all focused on the health of the population,” says Terrie Fox Wetle, dean of Brown's School of Public Health.
Questions for Ralph Milliken

Curiosity’s spectacular Martian side trip

Climbing Mount Sharp is still ahead for the Mars rover Curiosity, but a quarter-mile detour to a promising spot called Yellowknife Bay has yielded a bonanza of information. Six scientific papers are published online in Science today. Brown’s Ralph Milliken, co-author of three of them, talks about the mission and results to date with science writer Kevin Stacey.

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