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Thursday, June 30 2016

  • Decision to ban unrealistic body images has merit, but presents challenges

    A public health measure and a slippery slope. That's how Iowa State University experts describe the decision by London's mayor to ban ads with "unrealistic body images" from the city's public transit system. The ban is intended to limit exposure to ads that can have harmful effects, but it raises questions on how to define what's acceptable. 

  • ISU scientists develop nanomachines to diagnose illness

    Tiny machines that build themselves and detect disease? Step inside the nanoscale world of Eric Henderson.

  • Breathing new life into schoolyards benefits entire communities

    Millions of American elementary school children are sidelined on barren plots of cracked asphalt that resemble parking lots rather than schoolyards. And despite the educational and health benefits of green landscapes, only two major cities in the United States — Denver and Boston — have renovated all of their public schoolyards. Bambi Yost, an Iowa State University assistant professor of landscape architecture, and her students are part of a collaboration of nonprofits, government agencies, landscape architects, schools, community members and universities. Together they are breathing new life into more than 300 neglected schoolyards in the School District of Philadelphia. They represent a burgeoning national movement to green schoolyards.

  • Give ‘em enough rope: Iowa State University veterinarians find an easier way to collect diagnostic samples from pigs

    Iowa State veterinarians have found that taking oral fluid samples from swine allows them to monitor diseases accurately without the difficult step of taking individual blood samples.

  • Workshop to present commercial viability of ‘Hexcrete’ idea for taller wind turbine towers

    Iowa State University engineers will explain the benefits of their Hexcrete technology for taller wind turbine towers during a workshop in late June. They'll also discuss how potential partners can be involved in building a full-scale prototype tower. The engineers have been developing the precast concrete technology since 2010.

  • Even when help is just a click away, stigma is still a roadblock

    Stigma is a major barrier preventing people with mental health issues from getting the help they need. Even in a private and anonymous setting online, someone with greater self-stigma is less likely to take that first step to get information about mental health concerns and counseling, according to a new Iowa State University study.

  • Iowa State University entomologists assess possibility of fighting soybean aphids with other insects

    Iowa State University entomologists are studying the possibility of combating soybean aphids, one of the most damaging pests Iowa farmers battle, by introducing a species of stingless wasp that eats them. The harmless, stingless wasps may offer a form of biological control that could suppress soybean aphid populations.

  • Leath announces initiatives to enhance safety at Iowa State

    At the June 9 Iowa Board of Regents meeting, ISU President Steven Leath announced three initiatives to enhance campus safety: development of a body camera policy for ISU Police; a new mobile app that will power the department's safety escort service; and expansion of the Multicultural Liaison Officer program, which began last spring.

  • Iowa State physicist wins early career awards to study mysterious materials

    Iowa State's Rebecca Flint recently won two early career research grants. The support from the U.S. Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation will advance her theoretical studies of unique materials featuring strongly interacting electrons. At low temperatures, these materials obey new laws of physics and have exotic properties.

  • Bad behavior may not be a result of bad parenting, but a lack of common language

    Most parents will admit that talking with a teenage child is difficult at times. It is even more challenging when parents and children don’t speak the same language fluently – a reality for a growing number of immigrant families in the United States. New research from Iowa State University suggests this language barrier can have negative consequences for adolescent self-control and aggressive behavior.

  • Iowa State Formula Team working overtime to re-engineer race car downforce and drag

    A manufacturing mistake forced the student-engineers of Iowa State's Formula SAE Team to re-engineer the aerodynamics package on this year's formula racing car. They'll put their Plan B to the test during two competitions this month. The car won't quite be what they originally designed, but they think it could still be a good racer.

  • ISU researchers looking to step up mosquito surveillance

    Mosquitoes are taking flight across Iowa, and it’s likely only a matter of time before they appear in a backyard near you. Though Zika virus poses no immediate threat in Iowa, ISU personnel are monitoring state mosquito populations for species that could potentially carry the disease.

  • Employers stress the need for college grads to have strong oral skills, Iowa State study finds

    Many college graduates are starting new careers. Regardless of their field or profession, employers say new employees need strong oral and interpersonal skills to be successful. That's according to a new Iowa State University study published in Business and Professional Communication Quarterly.

  • Low-income, rural mothers express need for family time outdoors

    Low-income mothers in rural communities say participating in outdoor activities as a family is a primary need for their physical and emotional well-being. But a new paper co-authored by Iowa State University's Kimberly Greder finds many of these families aren’t getting time together.