Isotope Sleuths

They say that dead men tell no tales. A University of Utah spin-off company begs to differ. Hair, teeth and bone all preserve a record of where a person’s been – often an invaluable boon to law enforcement with no other leads to go off of.  The company, IsoForensics, analyzes for slight variations in an organism’s chemistry that can give a clue to its recent environment. The versatile technique, called isotope analysis, has been used to crack cold cases, track counterfeit bills, combat post-9/11 terrorism and even trace the source of fast food. Because isotope analysis relies on chemistry common to all living things, the applications are endless.  Read More.

To Save Water on Lawns, Throw Some Shade

To Save Water on Lawns, Throw Some Shade

How much water does your lawn really need?  A University of Utah study re-evaluated lawn watering recommendations by measuring water use by lawns in Los Angeles. The standard model of turfgrass water needs, they found, lacked precision in some common urban southern California conditions, like the Santa Ana winds, or in the shade.  Read More.

Julie Hollien

Biologist Develops Better Way to Label RNA in Cells

Julie Hollien, assistant professor of biology, is about to mark her eighth year at the U.  She joined the Biology Department in 2008 and is one of nine faculty members in the College of Science who are collaborating in the Center for Cell and Genome Science (CCGS).  Read More.

Theoretical Climbing Rope Could Brake Falls

Theoretical Climbing Rope Could Brake Falls

University of Utah mathematicians showed it is theoretically possible to design ideal climbing ropes to safely slow falling rock and mountain climbers like brakes decelerate a car. They hope someone develops a material to turn theory into reality.  Read More.

Jen Heemstra

Finding the 'CURE'

Most undergraduate chemistry lab courses run a bit like a cooking lesson: Combine ingredients in the prescribed amounts according to the recipe. Heat, mix or shake as needed. Everyone knows what the final end product will be, since the experiment has been done countless times in countless labs.  Read More.

Benjamin C. Bromley

Bromley Appointed as New Department Chair of Physics and Astronomy

“Here at the U we have wonderful people working in a wide range of areas, spanning the smallest particles in nature to the largest structures in the universe. I am proud to work alongside them and I look forward to serving as Department Chair,” says Professor Ben Bromley.  Read More.