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Uncovering Genetic Underpinnings of Wood Digestion

11-21-07

Wood is made of three tightly intertwined compounds; taking it apart is a challenge, and termites are among the few known animals that can do it. Professor Jared Leadbetter led a team of researchers from other universities, private industry, and the Department of Energy (DOE) in uncovering the genetic underpinnings and the roles of bacteria in wood digestion by "higher termites." These insects abound in tropical and subtropical ecosystems. What the team found, says Leadbetter, is "a comprehensive set of blueprints for the bacteria that help dismantle wood." This has recently become a focus of interest for those interested in developing an effective, industrial method to convert wood into ethanol. [Caltech Press Release]

Tags: research highlights ESE Jared Leadbetter

 
Undergraduates Win Southern California Regional Programming Contest

11-11-07

Caltech undergraduates Euiwoong Lee (class of '09), Seungwoo Shin (class of '10), and Ben Zax (class of '10) have won the ACM Southern California Regional Programming Contest. Coached by Donnie Pinkston, the team was the only team to solve all six problems of the challenge. Caltech has won the regionals for the last 6 years straight - and eight years out of the last nine. Kudos programmers!

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Fifty Years in Space

11-11-07

Full video presentation of the Fifty Years in Space Conference held at Caltech is now available: click here for details.

Tags: GALCIT EAS history

Professor Dimotakis Elected Fellow of AAAS

10-01-07

In October, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Council elected Paul Dimotakis as a Fellow of AAAS. He will be recognized for his many contributions to science and technology at the Fellows Forum to be held on 16 February 2008 during the AAAS Annual Meeting in Boston.

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Professor Rosakis Receives the 2007 D. R. Harting Award

06-01-07

Ares Rosakis has received the 2007 D. R. Harting Award, from the Society of Experimental Mechanics (SEM) for the "Best Paper" published in Experimental Techniques. The title of the paper is "Supershear and Sub-Rayleigh to Supershear Transition Observed in Laboratory Earthquake Experiments". Rosakis and his co-authors, Dr. Kaiwan Xia and Professor Hiroo Kanamori received this award in June 2007 at the SEM Annual Conference, Springfield, MA.

Tags: honors GALCIT MCE Ares Rosakis D. R. Harting Award

Robert J. McEliece Receives Claude E. Shannon Award

01-01-03

Professor Robert J. McEliece has been chosen to receive the IEEE Information Theory Society's highest honor, the Claude E. Shannon Award for 2004, honoring his consistent and profound contributions to the field of information theory. Professor McEliece will receive an honorarium of $10,000 and will present a talk as part of the Shannon Lecture Series at the IEEE International Symposium on Information Theory in 2004. The award is named for Claude E. Shannon, an American mathematical engineer, whose work on technical and engineering problems within the communications industry laid the groundwork for both the computer industry and telecommunications.

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