The Scout Report for Science & Engineering - April 15, 1998

The Scout Report for Science & Engineering

April 15, 1998

A Publication of the Internet Scout Project
Computer Sciences Department, University of Wisconsin-Madison

The target audience of the new Scout Report for Science & Engineering is faculty, students, staff, and librarians in the life sciences, physical sciences, and engineering. Each biweekly issue offers a selective collection of Internet resources covering topics in the sciences, and related fields such as math and engineering, that have been chosen by librarians and content specialists in the given field of study.

The Scout Report for Science & Engineering is also provided via email once every two weeks. Subscription information is included at the bottom of each issue.

In This Issue
The Scout Report
* Research * Current Awareness
* Learning Resources * New Data
* General Interest * In the News

Environmental Contaminants Encyclopedia--NPS [.pdf]
Encyclopedia Listings
This new resource from the National Park Service contains a wealth of information central to the growing field of environmental toxicology. The site consists of a searchable encyclopedia of 118 environmental contaminants, from Acenaphthene to Zinc. With information on chemical elements, compounds, and products, the EC Encyclopedia also serves as a reference for determining the potential impact of the concentration of a certain substance. Entries are in Adobe Acrobat (.pdf) format and include background information, specific threats, and other related material. Complete reference information (the Referenc.pdf file) is also available. [LXP]
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Electrochemical Science and Technology Information Resource
Electrochemical Science and Technology Information Resource, hosted by the Ernest B. Yeager Center for Electrochemical Sciences (YCES) and the Chemical Engineering Department, Case Western Reserve University, is exactly what the name implies, a site containing a wealth of electrochemical science and technology resources. ESTIR was created based on frequently asked questions to the sci.chem.electrochem newsgroup. Resources are divided into twelve categories, including Internet resources, public domain information, scientific/technical societies and journals, and graduate school information. [KH]
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Ecology Software by Hsin Chi [.zip]
Hsin Chi, of the Laboratory of Theoretical Ecology at National Chung Hsing University (Taiwan), has placed seventeen free analytical programs at this site, designed for data analysis of Exponential Growth (or decay), Predation, Diversity Indices, Harvesting Theory, Logistic Growth, Usher or Williamson Matrices, and many others. All programs "are designed in Visual BASIC for Windows 95 (they do not run on Win 31)." Although there are restrictions on distributing the software, "users are welcome to download these programs and use them in Ecology class or for their own research." Note that the software is provided "for non-commercial uses" only. The site manager expects more programs to become available at the site in the near future. [LXP]
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Multiphase Flow Research in Europe
Hosted by the Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Nottingham, this site is a compilation of research projects studying multiphase flow. The format for the page is based on the CHISE '96 Conference. Projects are grouped according to the type of flow, e.g. gas-liquid and supercritical, and then further subdivided within each category. Cross references provide links to related projects. The list provides the reference number, title and description of the project, contact information, telephone and fax numbers, publications, and cross references to other listed projects. [KH]
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Two Journals From HighWire Press
Annual Reviews: Biomedical Sciences
British Medical Journal
HighWire Press
Annual Reviews: Biomedical Sciences covers 28 series ranging from Biochemistry to Public Health, and provides "systematic, periodic examinations of scholarly advances in a number of fields of science through critical authoritative reviews." The on-line edition includes full text and abstracts for 1997-Present; abstracts only for 1990-1996; and tables of contents only for 1984-1989. The free trial period runs through December 31, 1998. The British Medical Association provides free and unrestricted access to all British Medical Journal articles, job announcements, editorials, and a fully searchable archive of the journal. Currently, archives extend back to 1997 but these will eventually date to 1994. Subjects range "from asthma through aging to end of life decisions." Users can also register for a free, weekly email service providing lists of full or selected content. Access will be free until at least the end of 1998. [LXP]
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The Cosmos on a Shoestring--RAND Corporation [.pdf, 185p.]
Produced by the RAND Corporation, a non-profit research and analysis institution, The Cosmos on a Shoestring (available in Adobe Acrobat [.pdf] format only) details the development of small spacecraft within the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the Department of Defense. As budgets are reduced for large and often risky spacecraft, departments are shifting towards the development of smaller spacecraft. Divided into seven chapters, the report provides an overview of current small spacecraft missions and their cost effectiveness, current and future technology for developing small spacecraft, and conclusions and recommendations for the future of small spacecraft. Especially helpful is an alphabetical glossary of acronyms. [KH]
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Learning Resources
Atlas of the Flora of New England
Ray Angelo and Dr. David E. Boufford of the Harvard University Herbaria provide this site, which covers the Flora of New England. First published in Rhodora (Volume 98(893): 1-79), the online Atlas contains updated information on the distribution of "all vascular plants (pteridophytes and spermatophytes) at the rank of species, subspecies, and variety, growing outside of cultivation in the New England states." Distribution maps are provided for hundreds of species and denote presence or absence within each county. Note that the second installment of the Atlas (Poaceae) is expected to appear on the web (and later, on paper) by mid-1998. Following that, the third installment will cover monocots, except for Poaceae and Cyperaceae. [KH]
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Wester's World--An Online Guide to Physics
Wester's World was written by an Advanced Placement physics class at the Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science; it provides lessons and tests on topics usually covered in a first year college physics class. Lessons are divided into seven chapters, including motion, work and energy, momentum, and electricity and magnetism. Each chapter ends with a test, for which solutions are provided. The students have also compiled a list of frequently asked questions (FAQs), divided into two categories: classical and modern physics. The answers are simple and straightforward. Links to additional resources are provided. [KH]
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Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment--NOAA
This impressive site from the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Forecast Systems Laboratory in Boulder, Colorado serves as an educational gateway into the science of global climate patterns. Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) is "a worldwide network of students, teachers, and scientists working together to study and understand the global environment." Geared for K-12 students and their teachers, GLOBE students around the world "perform environmental observations and send their data via the Internet to the GLOBE Student Data Archive. GLOBE students work under the supervision of trained teachers and follow consistent protocols to produce scientifically useful data." Also at the site are excellent graphics of the El Nino monthly max air temperatures in South America, a detailed vegetation map of africa, and a special section on Earth Day 1998, with unique projects for April 22, 1998. [LXP]
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Exactly How Is Math Used In Technology?
The Mathematics Department at the British Columbia Institute of Technology succeeds in demonstrating the usefulness of mathematics in our lives through examples detailed at this site. The examples are divided into eight different mathematical categories and seventeen technological fields, including civil and structural engineering, mining technology, and surveying. Not all math categories are linked with each technology. [KH]
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E-Quarium: Monterey Bay Aquarium Online
This publicly-targeted site from the Monterey Bay Aquarium offers much more than a tour of an aquarium; it contains a wealth of introductory information on fish, coral reefs, intertidal areas, open ocean environments, marine mammals, and conservation issues. The Habitats Path Tour takes the user on a cyber-tour of Monterey Bay. Special exhibits (newly on-line) include Fishing For Solutions, an introduction to some of the complexities of overfishing, and El Nino, providing graphics and background information on global weather anomalies. In addition, the site offers a small but solid collection of links for viewers wishing to "get involved." Whether interested in a broad introduction to the ocean or insights into how to capture public interest in the marine world, this site has much to offer. [LXP]
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General Interest
Earth Day 1998--EPA
April 22, 1998 is the 28th anniversary of Earth Day, a day to celebrate and honor the Earth. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) offers an Earth Day 1998 website with links to EPA publications and regional activities. The EPA has also compiled a list of frequently asked questions and provides links to other organizations and events focused on Earth Day 1998. [KH]
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America's 20 Most Endangered Rivers of 1998--American Rivers
American Rivers, a leading national river-conservation organization, is dedicated to protecting and restoring America's river systems and fostering "a river stewardship ethic." This site highlights the newly released "America's Most Endangered Rivers," and describes "the imminent and serious threats they face, and the steps we must take to protect and restore them." From the Pacific Northwest to the Eastern Seaboard, the rivers listed face threats from all types of human activities and encroachment, namely agricultural pollution, developmental sprawl, and mining, among others. The Columbia River, Hanford Reach (Washington) is listed as the most endangered river in North America. Also at the site is a map locating all endangered rivers, ecological information, descriptions of threats, and relevant news releases. [LXP]
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Digital Globe [MPEG]
Visitors to the Digital Globe have a front seat view of Lisbon, Portugal and the Phillipine Trench. The site offers two MPEG videos which animate topographic seafloor images. The video clips were created by David Sandwell at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. Also available are nine images of seafloor topography from around the globe. Note that the videos are very large files. [KH]
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The Spockies: The Doctor Spock Special Honors for Animal Parents
This feature from Discovery Online highlights the bizarre extremes of animal parenting. Sure to be a favorite among kids, the colorful site allows viewers to vote for your favorite wacky animal parent. From Gastric Brooding frogs (which brood their young in their stomachs) to Short-beaked Echidnas (which bury their young in the ground), this site celebrates the true diversity of parenting. [LXP]
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Hawaiian Volcano Observatory--USGS
As part of the US Geological Survey, the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) is charged with monitoring and researching volcanoes in Hawaii. The site provides current activity reports, hazard information, and a history of the two main volcanoes, Kilauea and Mauna Loa. In addition, the site provides information on three other volcanoes that are either active or potentially active. Visitors can also learn about earthquakes in Hawaii and the particular hazards posed by volcanos. Captivating photos help bring the volcanoes to life. Visitors can patronize the Photo Gallery for additional volcano photos. Cross links to additional information and sites are provided on every page. [KH]
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Current Awareness
(For links to additional current awareness on tables of contents, abstracts, preprints, new books, data, conferences, etc., visit the Science & Engineering Current Awareness Metapage:

The Changing Nature of Environmental and Public Health Protection: An Annual Report on Reinvention--EPA
The US Environmental Protection Agency has released this 1997 annual report on "reinventing environmental protection." Included in the report are fact sheets, statistical tables, graphics, and full text explaining "some of the most significant changes that are taking place in environmental protection" and the practical implications for businesses, communities and individuals. [LXP]
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Special Climate and Weather Summary--NOAA
Produced by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, this climate summary details the effects of El Nino on the country's weather from December 1997 through March 1998. The climate summary reports climate anomalies and changes for a variety of locations across the US. The summary also provides record highs for both temperature and precipitation that were set within the given months. [KH]
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New Publications
New Congressional Research Service Reports--CNIE NLE
The National Library for the Environment (discussed in the October 18, 1996 Scout Report), provided by the Committee for the National Institute for the Environment, has recently added fifteen full-text Congressional Research Service (CRS) reports. Reports cover an array of topics including Global Climate Change: Market-Based Strategies to Reduce Greenhouse Gases;Endangered Species [Act] Amendments;The Clean Water Initiative; and The National Institute of Standards and Technology: An Overvie. In addition, 22 other reports have been updated. [LXP]

Publication of Mars Global Surveyor Articles--Science
The full text of seven Science Magazine articles is available on the web. Each article links to the html version with an option to read the article in Adobe Acrobat (.pdf) format. Readers new to the Mars Global Surveyor Mission (discussed in the November 8, 1996 Scout Report) may want to start with the first article, which provides an overview and explains the status of the mission. [KH]

New Titles from ASM Press
ASM Press, the book publishing division of the American Society for Microbiology, publishes "reference manuals, scholarly monographs, and textbooks in all of the microbiological sciences." Recent releases include Pathology of Emerging Infections;Essential Procedures for Clinical Microbiology;Molecular Biotechnology: Principles & Applications of Recombinant DNA, 2nd Edition;Modification and Editing of RNA; and Escherichia coli O157:H7 and Other Shiga Toxin-Producing E. coli Strain, among others. Descriptions and ordering information are provided at the site. [LXP]

Academic Research and Development Expenditures Fiscal Year 1996--NSF SRS [Excel]
This report, produced by the Division of Science Resources Studies of the US National Science Foundation, is highlighted by 75 Microsoft Excel time series and snapshot tables detailing R&D expenditures by source of funds and scientific field, at historically black colleges, by geographic distribution, in descending order of amounts (by institution), and by fields and selected sub-fields, among others. Time periods vary, with most data available back to 1989. [JS]
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Job Openings in Science and Technology from the Chronicle of Higher Education

A Career Planning Center for Beginning Scientists and Engineers--NAS
This site, provided by the US National Academy of Sciences, is a gateway to a large amount of information regarding careers for beginning scientists. It is divided into nine topical sections at this time, including information on trends in the job market, links to career guidance, and an advice center where new scientists can request a mentor and experienced professionals can volunteer to be mentors. The highlight of the site, from the point of view of employment seeking, is the Employment and Research Funding Center, with annotated links to employment, internship, fellowship, postdoctoral, and research funding opportunity information. In addition, there is a selected list of available jobs. Note that the site is free but requests registration. [JS]
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Funding Opportunity Information
Integrative Graduate Education and Research Training Program--NSF
The National Science Foundation is sponsoring this program to increase the multidisciplinary training of Ph.D. candidates. IGERT will fund the development of training programs that provide a multidisciplinary approach to the education of scientists and engineers. Preprosals are due July 1, 1998 with the full proposal due November 23, 1998. [KH]

SBI: Western Arctic Shelf Basin Interactions, Phase 1--NSF
The National Science Foundation and Office of Naval Research (ONR) have announced a new funding opportunity for the Arctic Ocean. "Studies of shelf/slope water mass modification and exchange processes and biogeochemical cycles are a priority for improving our capacity to predict environmental change. The topics are particularly important because they profoundly influence the thermohaline and biogeochemical structure of the Arctic Ocean." Proposals are due June 15, 1998. [LXP]

The BFGoodrich Collegiate Inventors Program
So you think you have a patentable idea? The BFGoodrich Collegiate Inventors Program honors and rewards students (undergraduate, graduate, and post-graduate) and their advisors for original inventions, ideas, or processes. Entries are judged by experts in mathematics, scientists, and patent experts. The deadline for the current competition is June 2, 1998. [KH]

Lucent Technologies Industrial Ecology Research Fellowships 1998
In collaboration with the Lucent Technologies Foundation, the National Science Foundation has announced the Lucent Technologies Foundation Industrial Ecology Research Fellowships for 1998. Proposals are due May 29, 1998. Instructions are provided at the site. [LXP]
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International Conference on Mathematics/Science Education & Technology--M/SET 99
M/SET 99, sponsored by the Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE), will be held March 1-4, 1999. The conference will discuss the educational importance of information technology in the fields of mathematics, science, and computer science. Highlighted topics include research, current issues, development, theory, applications, and trends. Proposals are due October 15, 1998. [KH]

Electronic Conference on Research and Biodiversity--EWGRB
The European Working Group on Research and Biodiversity has announced an Electronic Conference on Research and Biodiversity to be held from May 4 to June 14, 1998. Open to the public and designed to encourage a "fluent and direct dialogue between scientists and the wider community," the goal of the E-conference is to identify the main needs and priorities in Biodiversity Research, and to develop an effective approach to protect and manage European Biodiversity. Background information and instructions on how to participate are provided at the site. [LXP]

The Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC)
The Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC), will be held in an annual meeting of the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) from September 24-27, 1998, in San Diego, California. ICAAC meetings emphasize the exchange of new information "among researchers and clinicians interested in antimicrobial and anticancer drugs and infectious diseases." Instructions, deadlines and details are provided at the site. [LXP]
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New Data
Galileo Solid State Imaging Full Data Releases--E6
The US National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Jet Propulsion Laboratory has released updated Solid State Images (discussed in the September 12, 1997 Scout Report) of Galileo's sixth orbit of Jupiter (E6). Data sets and images are available through the Planetary Data System. [KH]
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USDA Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 12 [.zip]
The Nutrient Data Laboratory of the US Agricultural Research Service has announced Release 12 of the Nutrient Database for Standard Reference (discussed in the October 15, 1997 Scout Report for Science and Engineering). The data can be searched and viewed from the home page or downloaded in several different formats. The Database contains information on food groups, nutrient content, weights, measures and source footnotes. Over 5,900 foods are included and full file documentation is available. [LXP]
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African 6K Land Surface Conditions [Excel]
ftp to:
Change Directory to:
One degree by one degree data are available for the land cover of the Arabian Peninsula and North Africa at 6,000 years BP (before present). The data are available as an ASCII text file or a Microsoft Excel (7.0) spreadsheet. Land cover data include vegetation types, open lakes, and wetlands. Channel flow data are also available. The data is provided by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Paleoclimatology Program and World Data Center A- Paleoclimatology. [KH]
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Butterflies of Poland Database
Jaroslaw Buszko and Edmund Kartanas of Nicholas Copernicus University provide this site, which contains two databases: Database on the distribution of butterflies in Poland; and Database supporting identification of Polish butterflies. The first (and more complete) of the databases covers the time span 1986-1997; the user can select single or multiple years to display a species' distribution on a UTM grid system. Although the search time is slow (45 seconds to more than a minute), this valuable resource provides excellent and detailed distribution information for each species. The second database (identification of butterflies, listed by scientific name) is currently under construction and only 20 species have so far been presented; the Polish text will limit this database's utility to non-Polish speakers, nevertheless, the clear color images and Latin names are of obvious utility. [LXP]
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In the News
Fires in the Amazon
1. News articles
ABC News: Hidden Amazon Fires Rage
Amazon Fires, CO2 Increase More Than Reported--EDF
2. Fire in the Amazon--WHRC [RealPlayer]
3. Fires in the Amazon: An Analysis of NOAA-12 Satellite Data 1996/97--EDF
4. Fires and Trace Gas Emissions in Brazil--NASA
Assessment of Fire Emissions and Biogeochemical Impacts in Brazil
Satellite Sensing of Fires and Estimation of Resultant Emissions in Brazil
5. Amazon Fires
6. Orbital Monitoring of Burned Areas
7. 15-17 March 1998--Fires in Amazonia [Java]
8. The International Fire Information Network
This week's In The News covers the issues around the massive fires burning in the Brazilian Amazon. The nine sites listed above provide information and commentary on the global issue. Since July 1997, the media has paid attention to the Brazilian Amazon, as fires there increased and raged out of control. Thought to have been started by slash-and-burn agriculturists, these fires were influenced by El Nino weather patterns and spread in size and intensity until reaching devastating heights in late March, 1998. Although a fortuitous three-day rain extinguished most fires, experts warn that the threat of future fires remains high. While Brazil has received much attention in recent months, such fires are not limited to South America; Indonesia and other tropical countries face similar disturbances to their ecological and economic environments.

(1) The first two sites provide a sampling of recent news articles about the fires in the Brazilian Amazon, including a map of the Amazon and background information. (2) The Woods Hole Research Center, a leader among tropical forest research institutes, provides this site, which includes background information and descriptions of fire research projects in the Amazon, as well as an ABC News Weekend Report video clip from Dec. 7, 1997 - "WHRC on Fire in Brazil" (RealPlayer 5.0). For further references on the ecological impacts of fire in the Amazon, see WHRC's "Publications" section. (3) Stephan Schwartzman of the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) created this site, which examines the National Oceanic Atmospheric and Association's satellite data. NOAA results indicate a 28% increase in burning in the Brazilian Amazon between 1996 and 1997. (4) The following site, from the Ecosystem and Technology Branch of NASA, features two reports on fires and trace gas emissions in Brazil. James A. Brass et al wrote these two reports, which provide estimates of the biogeochemical impacts of fire emissions. (5) Amazon Fires is an informal but informative site put together by scientific researchers at the University of Florida at Gainesville who have lived and worked in the Brazilian Amazon during the past decade. Included are news articles, commentary and reports from Brazilian collaborators during the recent period of intense fires, March 18-23, 1998. (6) Orbital Monitoring of Burned Areas is provided by the Environmental Monitoring Center of the Brazilian Agency for Agricultural Research (NMA). At the site are graphic summaries of satellite images of the burns (at biweekly, monthly, quarterly, or yearly scales) for seven years of map coverage. (7) This site, provided by the Cooperative Institute for Meteorological Satellite Studies at the Space Science and Engineering Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison, provides four satellite photographs of hot spots from fires in the area. The site is highlighted by a Java based interactive dual image comparison of photos from March 15 and 16 that allow users to compare March 15 to March 16 in the same photo. (8) The final site is provided by Firenet, a special interest network dedicated to all aspects of fire science and management. Based at Charles Sturt University in Australia, this excellent resource covers many aspects of fire research and contains images and links to sites around the world. [LXP]
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The Scout Report for Science & Engineering is published every other Wednesday by the Internet Scout Project, located in the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Department of Computer Sciences.

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Copyright Susan Calcari and the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents, 1994-1998. Permission is granted to make and distribute verbatim copies of the Scout Report for Science & Engineering provided the copyright notice and this paragraph is preserved on all copies. The Internet Scout Project provides information about the Internet to the US research and education community under a grant from the National Science Foundation, number NCR-9712163. The Government has certain rights in this material.

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