Blogging break

Thank you for visiting.

The Faculty of Science blog will no longer be updated on a regular basis. Instead, please visit the updated Faculty of Science website for information about upcoming events, happenings within departments and programs, and alumni activities taking place.

 

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Dalhousie Science Symposium

The Dalhousie Science Society will be hosting the first Dalhousie Science Symposium on March 20, 2013, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the McInnes Room (SUB).

The symposium will feature keynote speakers from Dalhousie, and is meant to showcase undergraduate research at our institution.

Students can register their research poster starting January 21, 2013, at noon. Deadline for registrations is Friday, March 8, 2013, at 11 a.m. There are only 30 spots available, so register early!

Judges will be present to rate each poster based on a variety of criteria including:

  • organization of the poster
  • ability to communicate their research.

There is no individual oral presentation or thesis defense component to the Dalhousie Science Symposium. Participants should only be prepared to explain their findings to those who visit their poster board. Prizes will be awarded to the top three posters, as determined by the judges.

Science alumni are invited to volunteer for the event. Contact Tori Taylor at tori_taylor@hotmail.ca for more information.

The Dalhousie Student Society website is being updated daily with more information about the symposium, so visit thedss.ca regularly to stay current.

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Winter wine tasting event for Science and FASS alumni

“A bottle of wine contains more philosophy than all the books in the world”
- Louis Pasteur, french microbiologist and chemist, (1822-1895)

From ancient times to present day, wine’s influence can be seen across the arts, humanities, performing arts and social sciences. Its nuances are studied and refined through the science of creating this beverage.

Join the Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences, the Faculty of Science and sommelier Jonathan Wilson (BSc’05) for an evening of education and fun as we taste wines, discover pairings and learn a little about its historical and scientific roots. Just in time for
Valentine’s Day, or to help ease any winter blahs that may be setting in.

Thursday, January 31, 2013
6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Milligan Room
Life Sciences Building (8th floor, Biology Tower), Studley Campus

Tickets are $25 per person/$10 for designated drivers

Please RSVP as space is limited. Deadline to RSVP is January 25.

Buy your tickets online.

 

(January 24 – Please note – RSVP link has been updated)

For more information, please contact Krista Armstrong, FASS Alumni & Communications Officer at krista.armstrong@dal.ca or Dawna MacIvor, Science Alumni & Donor Relations Officer at dawna.macivor@dal.ca.

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Brightest Stars on the Coldest Nights

The Halifax Planetarium at Dalhousie University presents:

Time: Thursday, January 17th, 7:15 pm
Location: Rm. 118, Dunn Bldg, Dalhousie University, 6310 Coburg Rd
Presenter: Chris Young
Title: “Brightest Stars on the Coldest Nights!”

The early nights of winter show the brightest stars and most distinct constellations of the year. Join us at the Planetarium to explore the winter night sky, learn to find your way around and become better acquainted with Orion the Hunter, the Seven Sisters, Taurus the Bull and other star patterns and their stories.

Admission: $5 (at the door); reductions for families (min age 8 years)
Reservations Required: To reserve your seats, please e-mail planetarium@dal.ca and state the number of adults and children (8-15) in your group.

The show is about an hour long. Full details will be sent via e-mail before the show. Please do not be late. No admission after the door closes.

For this and other Astronomy events in Nova Scotia, visit the Astronomy Nova Scotia website.

Are your children under 8 years old? Please ask the Discovery Centre about their new Digitarium!

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Holiday wishes from the Dean of Science

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Christmas planetarium show – two added shows

The ever-popular Christmas Star Show is back for two encore presentations at the Halifax Planetarium!

Date & Time:      Thursday December 27th, 2012, at 7:15 p.m.
Location:   Rm. 118 Dunn Building, Dalhousie University, 6310 Coburg Road
Presenter:  Quinn Smith
Title:      “The Christmas Star — Fact or Fiction?”

Date & Time:       Thursday, January 3rd, 2013, 7:15 p.m.
Location:   Rm. 118 Dunn Building, Dalhousie University, 6310 Coburg Road
Presenter:  Quinn Smith
Title:      “The Christmas Star — Fact or Fiction?”

Did the Christmas Star really exist, and if so what was it? Explore the night sky over Bethlehem around 2,000 years ago.

More information at the Astronomy Nova Scotia website.

Admission: $5; reductions for families.  The show is about an hour long.

Reserve seats by e-mailing planetarium@dal.ca with the number of adults and children (8-15) in your group.

Full details will be sent shortly before the show.

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Watch for your 2013 calendar!

It’s that time of year again!

This year's "Science As Art" calendar cover

The 2013 Science As Art calendar, produced by the Faculty of Science, is once again hot of the presses and will be in the mail shortly. Watch for your copy! It’s an incredible collection of photos and images from Faculty of Science students, faculty, alumni and staff.

But there’s another aspect to the calendar beyond the beauty and science of these images.

Attending workshops and conferences for undergraduate students; assisting with student outreach activities in the community; and field trips and special workshops on career preparation are all initiatives that are essential for student success.

To support these initiatives, the Faculty of Science Student Experience Fund is invaluable. This fund gives students hands-on and experiential learning opportunities that foster creativity and inter-disciplinary cooperation. Our ambitious goal is to build the Student Experience Fund to $2 million. The current total is $234,000 — we have a long way to go and will need your help to make it a reality. We ask you to join us in supporting students with a gift to the Student Experience Fund.

If you haven’t sent in your donation, please consider doing so soon.

If you haven’t received your Science As Art calendar and would like a copy, please contact Dawna MacIvor, alumni officer for the Faculty of Science at scialum@dal.ca. A limited number are available. If you receive a copy, please make a donation to the Science Student Experience Fund in return.

And remember to enter your image for the 2014 Science As Art image competition! Learn more and download your entry form.

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Chemistry Seminar – André D. Bandrauk

Professor André D. Bandrauk
Department of Chemistry
University of Sherbrooke

will be giving a seminar entitled:

“FAZSST-Femto-Atto-ZeptoSecond-Science & Technology-and/or Laser Control of Electrons”

Friday, November 23, 2012
Chemistry 226, 1:30 pm
Coffee and donuts, Room 225 at 1:15 pm

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14h Annual Gordon A. Riley Memorial Lecture

Date: 3:00 PM, November 14, 2012
Speaker: Dr. William M. Balch, Senior Research Scientist
Speaker affiliation: Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences
Venue: NRC Lecture Theatre – 1411 Oxford St, Halifax NS

Coccolithophores are calcifying marine phytoplankton. Their growth and sedimentation over geological time has resulted in the formation of some of Earth’s most striking geological formations (e.g. the White Cliffs of Dover). From the early writings of the great naturalists and Darwin contemporaries in the mid-1800s, scientists have pondered their geological (and biogeochemical) significance. Even contemporary authors during the mid-1800s made careful references to dense, milky waters that fit the pattern of their known ocean distributions. It wasn’t until over a century later, however, with the advent of satellite remote sensing of ocean color, that the presence of these turbid, milky blooms was confirmed to be a regular occurrence in the global ocean. Now we know that such blooms can cover hundreds of thousands of square kilometers and effectively enhance the oceans albedo through their intense light scattering, with significant effects on light penetration and ocean heating. We also know that the biological storage of carbon in the deep sea is intimately tied to the presence of these minute organisms. Moreover, certain species of coccolithophores appear to be the canary in the mine for ocean climate change.

My talk will follow the scientific thread from the first description of these calcifying plants, to more recent observations. The story will cover temporal scales of seconds to 220 million years (~15 orders of magnitude of time) and spatial scales from micrometers to 10,000 kilometers (~13 orders of magnitude in space), highlighting the relevance of coccolithophores to the fields of ocean optics, biogeochemistry and climate change.

Professor Emeritus Gordon A. Riley F.R.S.C. Director, Institute of Oceanography Dalhousie University, 1965-1973

This annual lecture series was established in 1999 to honour the memory of the late Gordon A. Riley, Professor of Oceanography and Director of the Institute of Oceanography (now Department of Oceanography). Invited speakers are chosen and hosted by the Department of Oceanography Student Association (DOSA).

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Late autumn night skies – Planetarium show

Time:       Thursday, November 22nd, 7:15 pm
Location:   Rm. 118, Dunn Bldg, Dalhousie University, 6310 Coburg Rd
Presenter:  Dan Arsenault
Title:      Late Autumn Night Skies

The late Autumn sky permits the best view of our closest, neighbouring sister galaxy, Andromeda. Visit the Halifax Planetarium to become acquainted with this and other visible ‘fuzzy’ objects, as well as the seasonal constellations.

Admission:  $5 (at the door); reductions are available for families (Minimum Age 8 yr)
Reservations are required. Please e-mail planetarium@dal.ca and indicate the number of adults and children (8-15) in your party.

The show is about an hour long. Full details will be sent via e-mail before the show.

Please do not be late. No admission after the door closes.

Weather permitting, there will be an opportunity after the Show to view the real night sky with telescopes and an expert guide.

For this and other Astronomy events in Nova Scotia, please visit the Astronomy Nova Scotia website.

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Chute Lectures – Department of Chemistry

Dear Colleagues,

I’m writing to remind you of this week’s special events in the Department–the Chute Lectures, our premier departmental seminar series.

  

This year we are honoured to have Robert Langer from MIT as the Chute Lecturer, he will be presenting two talks (please note places, dates, and times):

Thursday, Nov. 1, 8:00 PM, Scotiabank Auditorium–Biomaterials and Biotechnology: From the discovery of the first angiogenesis inhibitors to the development of controlled drug delivery systems and the foundation of tissue engineering

Friday, Nov. 2, 12:30 PM, Chemistry 226: Novel drug delivery systems and the application of high throughput approaches to drug delivery and stem cell technologies

Please plan to attend both seminars. I’ve seen Langer speak before and he’s truly exceptional both as a scientist and as a speaker.

Josef W. Zwanziger
Professor and Chairman, Department of Chemistry
Canada Research Chair in NMR Studies of Materials
Department of Chemistry
Dalhousie University

 

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Ransom A Myers lecture now available online

For those who were unable to attend the Ransom A. Myers lecture in person on Friday, October 19, 2012, it is now available for viewing online.

Lecture video: Dr Alexandra Morton, Founder and Director of the Rainforest Research Society, Simoon Sound, BC.

Please be warned: The video may be slow to load. Patience is appreciated.

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Work Your Degree 2012

On Saturday, October 20, 2012, about 22 recent graduates and soon-to-graduate students gathered in the Cameron Room of Howe Hall to attend the second annual Work Your Degree – the Career Skills Workshop for BAs/BScs. The event is a partnership between the Faculty of Science, Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences, and the Career Services Centre.

This full-day workshop is designed to provide some guidance and reassurance of life after your undergrad – to show that it is possible to get a career you love with the education and skills obtained in your BA/BSc. We’ve enlisted the help of a number of successful young alumni with either a BA or BSc. They will share their stories on how they ‘worked’ their degrees and where their undergrad experience has taken them today.

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Science As Art 2014 – 10th Edition!

It’s getting to be that time of year again!

Dust off your camera, program your computer, clean off the lenses of your microscope, dig out your sketch book, or rummage through your jpegs and film negatives. Do what you have to so you can submit a photo for the 2014 Science As Art calendar, produced annually by the Faculty of Science.

And this edition of the calendar is a special one – it will be the 10th edition of Science As Art! Let’s make this an outstanding one!

Submissions are currently being accepted. Deadline for submissions is Friday, March 8, 2013 at 4 p.m. Atlantic time.

All Faculty of Science alumni, students (must be registered in a Dalhousie Faculty of Science program), faculty, retired faculty and staff are encouraged to submit their photos and images.

Download the Science As Art 2014 Entry Form (PDF – 1MB)

The subjects of the photographs and images are limited only by your imagination. Past submissions include sunsets, insects, axon fibers, LiDAR imaging, animal encounters, species genetic diversity mapping, plasma globes, protoplasts, a superconductor levitating on a rare earth magnet, triple immunolabeling for serotonin, CSP and dVMAT taken in the Tupper imaging suite. We’d love to see GIS/mapping images, and more mathematical images submitted this year.

Entries will be exhibited in late March. Date and venue to be confirmed. Faculty of Science students, alumni, retired and current faculty, and staff can vote on their favourite selections during these times. Alumni, retired faculty, and friends of the Faculty of Science unable to come to campus will be able to vote online again this year. Online voting will take place during the same week of the exhibit. Watch your e-mail for information on how to participate.

Winners will be chosen based on the number of votes received, and departments covered by the entries provided. Winners will be notified by telephone or e-mail, so please ensure contact information provided will be accurate as of September 2013.

Please contact Dawna MacIvor, alumni and donor relations officer, with any questions you may have by emailing scialum@dal.ca, or call (902) 494-8443. Please note that submissions sent to this e-mail address will not be accepted.

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Work Your Degree

For the second year, the Faculty of Science, Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences, and Career Services are partnering to present Work Your Degree, the Career Skills Workshop for BAs/BScs.

Saturday, October 20
9:30 – 3:30p.m.
Cameron Room, Howe Hall
Tickets are $15 (includes breakfast, lunch, all materials)

Register Online 

The purpose of this full-day workshop is to provide some guidance and reassurance of life after your undergrad – to show that it is possible to get a career you love with the education and skills obtained in your BA/BSc. We’ve enlisted the help of a number of successful young alumni with either a BA or BSc. They will share their stories on how they ‘worked’ their degrees and where their undergrad experience has taken them today. (Some stories are surprising, which goes to show that where you start isn’t always were you end up!)

Itinerary for the day:

9.15a.m. – Registration
9.30a.m. – Welcome & Opening Remarks – Andrew Younger
10-12 – Workshops where students/new alumni learn about transferrable skills and practice them in a series of exercises
Noon – Lunch & Presentation by FUSION Halifax, lead by Christy Lynn White, FUSION Director of Membership & Volunteerism
1:30 – Alumni Roundtable, where participants can practice their new skills and chat with alumni about career paths, stumbling blocks, experiences, etc.
3:30 – Conclude

Alumni participants to date:

Andrew Younger, BSc ‘98 (Marine Biology & Political Science), BJ ‘99 – MLA for Dartmouth East
Christy Lynn White, BA ’07 (Economics & International Development Studies) – Sales Rep, Nautel; FUSION Director of Membership & Volunteerism
Geoffrey Milder, BA ‘04 (English) – Development Officer, Children’s Miracle Network (IWK)
Paul Rhyno, BA ‘03 (Economics) – Owner, Partys R Us
Jonathan Wilson, BSc ‘95 (Biology) – Owner, Labeled Wine Consulting (Sommelier)

This has been highlighted as an important initiative for FASS students and new alumni. Please help me spread the word.

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Picchione Visiting Scholar presentation

Please join the Dalhousie University Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology and the Dalhousie Medical Research Foundation for a public seminar by the Picchione Visiting Scholar, Dr Neil Cashman, Professor of Medicine and Canada Research Chair in Neurodegeneration and Protein Misfolding Diseases, University of British Columbia.

Tuesday October 23rd, 7:30 p.m.
Scotiabank Auditorium, Marion McCain Building
Dalhousie University
6135 University Ave. Halifax, NS

Dr Cashman’s seminar is titled Targeting misfolded proteins in ALS: hope for a truly effective treatment.

Propagated protein misfolding has emerged as a central event in several neurodegenerative diseases. Understanding the role and mechanism of protein misfolding in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) may offer new strategies to prevent ALS and to arrest its progress.

Doors will be open at 7:05 p.m. Seating assistance will be available. Everyone is welcome.

Dr Cashman Seminar – Poster (PDF)

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The Stars of the Fall Sky

Join us for our upcoming Planetarium show!

Time: Thursday, October 11th, 7:15 pm
Location: Rm. 118, Dunn Bldg, Dalhousie University, 6310 Coburg Rd
Presenter: Patrick Kelly
Title: The Stars of the Fall Sky

Come and learn about the stars of the Fall sky. Several of the constellations visible are associated with the ancient Greek hero, Perseus — Andromeda is one, and is home to the largest object observable without a telescope, the Andromeda Galaxy.

If the skies are clear, we will look for the constellations in the real sky!

Admission: $5 (at the door); reductions for families (Minimum age is 8 yrs)
Reservations Required: e-mail planetarium@dal.ca
In your e-mail, please state number of adults and children (8-15) in your group.

The show is about an hour long. Full details will be sent via e-mail before the show. Please do not be late. No admission after the door closes.

For this and other Astronomy events in Nova Scotia, visit the Astronomy Nova Scotia website.

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Planetarium show – Autumn, Andromeda & Venus

Time: Thursday, September 27th, 7:15 pm
Location: Rm. 118, Dunn Bldg, Dalhousie University, 6310 Coburg Rd
Presenter: David Tindall
Title: Autumn, Andromeda & Venus

As of September 22nd at 11:49, Autumn began! Why?

The nights quickly grow longer, and the gathering darkness invites us all to explore the nightsky before it gets too cold. Find out how to locate the Andromeda galaxy, the most distant object that can be seen with the unaided eye.

For the next few months, Venus is also well placed for viewing and is always a favourite object.

Admission: $5 (at the door); reductions for families (Minimum Age 8 yr)
Reservations Required: e-mail planetarium@dal.ca
In your e-mail, please state the number of adults and children (8-15) in your group.

The show is about an hour long. Full details will be sent before the show. Please do not be late. No admission after the door closes.

For this and other Astronomy events in Nova Scotia, visit the Astronomy Nova Scotia website.

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Mathematics & Statistics – Distinguished Speaker Series

This year our Distinguished Speaker is Professor Srinivasa Varadhan. He will give a public talk on Thursday, October 11, 2012 at 7:30 p.m. in Room 1020, Rowe Building, Dalhousie university.

Reception will follow.

Title: RARE EVENTS

Abstract: We deal everyday with chance and often have to make a quantitative assessment how rare event really is. A precise measurement of the probability which is very small is important. We will review some examples and methods for carrying this out.

An RSVP is not required.

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Fifth Annual Ransom A. Myers Lecture

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Join us for the fifth annual Ransom A. Myers Lecture in Science and Society.

This year’s speaker is Dr Alexandra Morton, Founder and Director of the Rainforest Research Society, Simoon Sound, BC.

Friday, October 19, 2012, at 7 p.m.
Potter Auditorium, Kenneth C. Rowe Management Building

Reception to follow

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2012 E.W. Guptill Memorial Lecture

Join the Department of Physics and Atmospheric Science for the annual E.W. Guptill Memorial Lecture.

2012 Guptill Poster

September 21, 2012 at 8PM
Ondaatje Hall McCain Building
6135 University Avenue Halifax, NS

Reception to follow

This year’s speaker is Alan Robock from the Department of Environmental Sciences, Rutgers University. His presentation is titled Climatic Consequences of Nuclear Conflict: Nuclear Winter Still a Threat.

 

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Homecoming 2012

Come home to Dalhousie for Homecoming 2012!

There are a lot of great activities to get involved with. Join us from September 27 to 29 and enjoy all that it means to be a Dalhousian – the celebrated history, the powerful connections and the community spirit.

LSC Mystery Tour

1 p.m. and 2 p.m., Life Sciences Centre
Have you been curious about what the Life Sciences Centre contains? Officially opened in 1974, the LSC is a bit of a mystery for those who walk by it, as well as those who study within its walls. Join us to explore some of the nooks and crannies of the building and meet some of the researchers and staff who work there.

Tours are limited to 8 people per group due to space limitations. Please register by September 21.

Register Online

Lobster Tailgate: 4-6 p.m., next to Wickwire Field
What could be better on a beautiful fall afternoon than enjoying some lobster and cheering on the Dalhousie Tigers? Don your black and gold, grab a lobster bib, paint on your stripes and come down to Wickwire Field to root for the Tigers! Tickets are $30 or $15 for students and include your lobster meal and entrance to the football game.

Purchase tickets

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Faculty of Science lecture – Dr Randall Martin

 

Remember to join us this afternoon for the Faculty of Science lecture, featuring Dr. Randall Martin.

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Andromeda Rising – Planetarium show

Join us for the next Planetarium show!

Time: Thursday, August 30th, 7:15 pm
Location: Rm. 118, Dunn Bldg, Dalhousie University, 6310 Coburg Rd
Presenter: Jonathan Franklin
Title: “Andromeda Rising”

Autumn approaches! The nights grow longer, and the gathering darkness invites us all to explore the universe above. Come celebrate the wonders of the Northern Autumn sky with a planetarium tour of the brightest constellations, star clusters, and nebulae visible from Nova Scotia. Discussions will include easy observing strategies and tricks for spotting the most distant object visible with the naked eye!

Admission: $5 (at the door); reductions for families (MINIMUM AGE 8)

Please note that shows are most suitable for ages 8 and up; for younger children, please consider visiting the Discovery Centre for age-appropriate shows in their Digitarium.

Reservations Required: e-mail planetarium@dal.ca and please indicate the number of adults and children (8-15) in your group.

The Show is about an hour long. Full details will be sent before the Show. Please do not be late. No admission after the door closes.

For this and other Astronomy events in Nova Scotia, visit the Astronomy Nova Scotia website.

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Photos from McNabs 2012

On Saturday, August 18, 2012, a group of about 50 alumni and their families journeyed to McNabs Island for the second annual alumni excursion. The forecast was a good one, although the temperatures got quite warm. Dr. Rebecca Jamieson, chair of the Department of Earth Sciences, shared her knowledge about the geology of Halifax, the harbour area, and McNabs Island. Rachael Mansfield and Nicole Dragatis, summer students with the Friends of McNabs Island, shared their knowledge about some of the natural history and historical background of the area.

Thanks to all who attended this year!

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