The Scout Report for Science & Engineering - January 5, 2000

January 5, 2000

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


Learning Resources

General Interest

Current Awareness

New Data

In The News


University of California, Berkeley Physics Home Page [.ps, .pdf]
The University of California, Berkeley boasts one of the country's best physics departments. For an in-depth look at the touted department's current projects, users may browse through the Research Homepages section. Work in areas of astrophysics, atomic and molecular physics, biophysics, condensed matter, nuclear physics, plasma physics, and more may be found here. For example, the Budker Group's homepage contains details of recent work in experimental atomic and molecular physics; visitors can access current articles and preprints on parity violation in various systems, non-linear magneto-optics, electro-optics, and related phenomena here. Similarly, the Fajans Group's page on experimental plasma physics contains detailed accounts of current research along with recent, downloadable publications on topics such as non-neutral plasma physics, two-dimensional fluid dynamics, and nonlinear dynamics. Many of the other homepages also provide access to recent articles and preprints. Other highlights of the UC Berkeley Physics homepage include two physics instructional labs, which researchers may use as teaching aids, and a section of other physics resources containing useful links. [KR]
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Contemporary Herpetology
Devoted to "the global dissemination of scientific information on amphibians, turtles, crocodilians, and reptiles," Contemporary Herpetology is a peer-reviewed, online journal hosted by the California Academy of Sciences. Full text and figures for all scientific articles may be freely accessed here (covers 1998 to the present). Scientific paper topics include taxonomy, phylogeny, and amphibian surveys (in forests and woodlands), among others. Also at the journal's homepage are links to the Contemporary Herpetology Information Series and the On-line Directory of Herpetologists, a searchable database of researchers, providing affiliation, research interests, and contact information. Established and prospective Herpetologists, alike, will appreciate this excellent resource. [LXP]
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Research Group in Mathematical Inequalities and Applications [.dvi, .pdf, .ps]
From Australia's Victoria University of Technology, the Research Group in Mathematical Inequalities and Applications (RGMIA) is comprised of academics and researchers from Australia, Asia, Africa, Europe, and North America. The purpose of the group is to disseminate results via publication, create an awareness of the theory of inequalities, and illustrate the applicability of inequalities in the sciences. Highlights of this site include a preprint series called the Research Report Collection. Every few months, a new volume is added online (.dvi, .pdf, .ps) providing registered users with access to cutting edge research. Another excellent feature is the database of Papers in Theory of Inequalities & Applications. The database contains an expansive collection of publications in the field, all of which are downloadable. Members are invited to send in a list of publications for inclusion in the database. Membership (which provides a username and password, and serves as a measure to protect copyrights) is free via an online form. This is an excellent resource for those in the field of mathematical inequalities. [KR]
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Sea Grant Nonindigineous Species Site [.pdf]
The National Sea Grant College Program, in conjunction with the Great Lakes Sea Grant Network, has recently launched the Sea Grant Nonindigenous Species Site (SGNIS). Intended to serve as a national information center, SGNIS is structured as a database and provides "a comprehensive collection of research publications and education materials ... on zebra mussels and other aquatic nuisance species." The database is searchable by Title, Authors, Organization, Date of publication, or Keywords (subject), and typical returns provide hyperlinks to abstracts, and in come cases, the full text (.pdf format) of published articles. In addition to the publications listed here, a selection of external links points users to additional sites. This is an excellent resource, well conceived and up to date. [LXP]
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Los Alamos National Laboratory Transportation Program [.pdf]
The Los Alamos National Laboratory's (LANL) has applied some of its weapons development technologies to more peaceful uses in the realm of transportation. To this end, the Transportation Program is concerned with the development of innovative transportation systems. A Fuel Cells and Alternative Fuels section highlights the development of alternative fuels for use in fuel cells. A number of documents concerned with fuel cell systems research, as well as an online fuel cell tutorial, are available here. A Materials and Manufacturing section and a Concrete Center offer documents on the application of material science to transportation systems. Also, a Modeling and Simulation section contains reports on the development of modeling and simulation tools for studying the behavior of materials when poured into a mold, the way fuel ignites in an automobile engine chamber, and crash test simulations. Though this site emphasizes industrial applications, it offers a great deal of documentation of potential interest to academic engineers and others involved in urban planning and transportation systems. [KR]
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SAGE III Ozone Loss and Validation Experiment (SOLVE)
During the next three months, more than 350 scientists from Europe, Russia, Japan, and the United States will combine forces to measure ozone levels and changes in the upper Arctic atmosphere as part of SOLVE, the SAGE III Ozone Loss and Validation Experiment. Although much of the SOLVE homepage targets the public, several sections will be of interest to researchers and educators. The section entitled Mission Description features illustrated information on ozone, including ozone effects, UV-ozone interactions, Polar Stratospheric Clouds, and chemical reactions, among other topics. Also of interest is the Theory Teams section, providing summaries and references for more than a dozen SOLVE research projects -- including Photochemistry of Arctic Ozone, Resolution Modeling of Synoptic and Gravity Waves, and Theoretical Studies of Stratospheric and Tropospheric Clouds and Aerosols, to name a few. A collection of links rounds out the site. [LXP]
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Learning Resources

NASA Technical Report Writing
From NASA's Glenn Technical Library, this handy guide for engineers and scientists explains the basics of writing technical reports that are accurate and easy to read. The online guide contains nine chapters: "Stages of Report Preparation," "Report Style," "Report Introduction," "Experiment and Analysis Descriptions," "Results and Discussions," "Concluding and Supporting Sections," "Review of Reports," "References," and "Author's Checklist and Report Writing Aids." This clear and helpful guide is intended for engineers and researchers who find technical report writing a difficult chore. [KR]
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Introduction to Molecular Virology
Virologist Ed Rybicki of the Department of Microbiology at the University of Cape Town, South Africa, has put together this tutorial on molecular virology. Designed for second year college students, the tutorial provides a colorful introduction to the topic. Basic text is hyperlinked to detailed explanations, giving viewers an opportunity choose the level of detail with which they want to explore molecular virology. The site covers the basics (What is a Virus?) through more complex virology (e.g., Virus Architecture, Genomic Replication Strategies of Viruses, and Virus Classification). Although slightly awkward in navigation (some pages are slow to load, and font size and color can be distracting), the content of the site is well worth the read, and educators will find much useful material here. [LXP]
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An Introduction to Surface Chemistry
Written by Dr. Roger Nix of the Department of Chemistry at Queen Mary and Westfield College, University of London, this site represents a complete set of tutorials on the subject of Surface Chemistry. Among others, section headings include Structure of Metallic Surfaces, Adsorption of Molecules on Surfaces, The Langmuir Isotherm, and "Surface Imaging and Depth Profiling." The online course contains internal and external links, as well as occasional instructional questions and answers within tutorials. Also, the Surface Science Links page (accessed from the bottom of the main menu) contains a good selection of related sites. [KR]
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Ecology and Evolutionary Biology [.pdf]
Dr. Helene Engler of the University of Texas at Austin has created this collection of lecture notes (.pdf format) for her introductory course on Ecology and Evolutionary Ecology. Each lecture is comprised of an outline followed by brief notes. While depth of content is limited by brevity, the structure of the course and of each lecture is preserved here, providing a useful "skeleton" for beginning professors (or those wishing to compare approaches). A wealth of topics are covered here, including the scientific method, the history of evolutionary thought, the origin of life, evolution, genetics, behavioral ecology, population ecology, ecosystem ecology, biogeography, and conservation biology, among others. The notes may be browsed online or downloaded as a .pdf file. [LXP]
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Igneous Rock Tour
From the Department of Geological Science at California State University, Long Beach, the Igneous Rock Tour provides an introduction to igneous rocks with explanatory text and images of small samples and "rock outcrops in their natural settings." The tour covers Intrusive Igneous Rocks, Granite, Diorite, Gabbro, Igneous Intrusions, Extrusive Igneous Rocks, Rhyolite, Andesite, and Basalt. Finally, the tour ends with a short igneous rocks quiz. This simple resource may serve as a useful visual and informational aid for educators. [KR]
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General Interest

Toxic Chemicals in Coastal Environments [.pdf]
From the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Office of Response and Restoration, the Coastal Protection and Restoration Division hosts this page on protecting coastal environments and evaluating the threat of toxic contaminants to coastal ecosystems. The Sediment Guidelines section contains quick reference "tables with screening concentrations for inorganic and organic contaminants" (.pdf, 809K), a short paper on the development of the sediment quality guidelines (.pdf, 74K), and other information on sediment toxicity. Additional sections include Regional Information (a list of contaminants in specific US locations), Watershed Evaluation Tools, a Library with a collection of technical and general documents on toxic contaminants, and a photo gallery. This is an information-rich site for anyone interested in assessing potential threats and protecting coastal areas against toxic pollutants. [KR]
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Journal of Animal Ecology -- JSTOR
JSTOR: Participating Institutions
The British Ecological Society's Journal of Animal Ecology publishes original research papers "on most aspects of animal ecology," including reviews and theoretical analyses of specific topics. Now, at the JSTOR site, users may freely access all full-text articles from back issues of the Journal of Animal Ecology, once articles become three years old. Currently, JSTOR coverage includes Vols. 1-64 for the years 1932-1995; newer articles are continually added on a "moving wall" basis. Access is limited to participating institutions, a list of which is provided at the JSTOR site. [LXP]
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Internet History of Science Sourcebook
Edited by Paul Halsall, PhD, Assistant Professor of History at the University of North Florida, this Fordham University metasite contains links to documents and Web resources pertaining to the history of science. Although this site has a historical focus, it includes interesting science-related links and original texts from great scientific thinkers. Contents are organized by geographic locations and epistemologies. Topics range from the relevant history of Greco-Roman Culture to sites on the Enlightenment and the Industrial Revolution. The links are classified to indicate the type of resources, and Halsall claims to have taken care to choose sites of educational value. This is an unusual collection of links for those interested in reading about the development of scientific thought. [KR]
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California Wildflowers
The California Academy of Sciences's (CAS) Botany Department hosts this interesting and beautiful site on California's wildflowers. Spectacular color photographs of over 125 species of wildflowers serve as illustrations to this electronic field guide. Users may browse species by flower color (white through brown), common name (Alpine Lily to Yerba Mansa), latin name (Achillea millefolium to Zigadenus fremontii), or family name (Alismataceae through Violaceae). Additionally, floristic regions are provided in a color-coded map of California. For each species, the taxonomic identity (common, Latin, and family names), a description, photographs, and distribution information are provided. Educators and students of botany will find this site particularly useful; others will want to go see California in bloom. [LXP]
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Skyview [Java, Telnet]
From NASA, Skyview is a virtual observatory which allows users to view images of any part of the sky "in all regimes from Radio to Gamma-Ray." Users can employ a variety of interfaces to enter a desired position, scale, and orientation. By calculating the coordinates it receives, Skyview returns a made-to-order image of a specific portion of the night sky. Interfaces include Non-Astronomer, Basic, Advanced, Java, and X-Windows. The Telnet link requires a login which is provided (login: x-ray). The site includes a good introduction, general help information, and an FAQ. To make the most of this impressive facility, a little prior knowledge of astronomy and sky coordinates is required. [KR]
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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 The Scout Report for Science & Engineering Current Awareness Metapage:

NOAA's Top Weather, Water and Climate Events of the 20th Century Hyperlinked Press Release [.avi]
NOAA's Top Global Weather, Water and Climate Events of the 20th Century [.pdf]
NOAA's Top U.S. Weather, Water and Climate Events of the 20th Century
Here's an interesting pair of "greatest of the century lists." Compiled by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), these lists detail US and global storms and climate events most "noted for their atmospheric marvel or impact on human life." Users can browse the "winners," and view background information, historic photos, and animations from the press release page. Text-only lists (with some background information) are also available in .pdf format. [MD]
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For A Fish, There's No Place Like Home
"Larval retention and recruitment in an island population of a coral-reef fish"
Robert R. Warner homepage
In the December 16, 1999 issue of Nature, researchers from Australia and California used chemical tests to show that coral reef fish often spend their life cycle close to home, rather than drifting in the open ocean. These findings have important implications for global fisheries management. The first page, from EurekAlert!, provides a synopsis of the recent findings. The second page, from Nature magazine, gives the first paragraph from one of the scientific papers, "Larval retention and recruitment in an island population of a coral-reef fish," by Stephen Swearer and colleagues of the University of California (UC) at Santa Barbara. Paid subscribers may access the full text of all related Nature articles. The third page provides further information on Robert Warner, one of the lead researchers on the UC Santa Barbara paper, and an established professor of Marine Biology. [LXP]
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New Publications

"Global, Composite Runoff Fields Based on Observed River Discharge and Simulated Water Balances"
Penned by Balazs M. Fekete, Charles J. Vorosmarty, and Wolfgang Grabs of the University of New Hampshire's Global Hydrology Group, this report entitled "Global, Composite Runoff Fields Based on Observed River Discharge and Simulated Water Balances" explains "the potential of combining observed river discharge information with [a] climate-driven Water Balance Model in order to develop composite runoff fields which are consistent with observed discharges." A linked table of contents allows users to move easily through sections of the report. [KR]

Two from GCRIO
"The Extreme Weather Events of 1997 and 1998"
"Beyond Kyoto: Toward A Technology Greenhouse Strategy"
The Global Climate Change Research Information Office (GCRIO) has released Volume 5, issue 1 of Consequences, featuring two review articles, "The Extreme Weather Events of 1997 and 1998" and "Beyond Kyoto: Toward A Technology Greenhouse Strategy." The first article, by Kevin E. Trenberth, discusses the probability of the increased frequency of such events due to global warming. James A. Edmonds wrote the second article, highlighting the politics and mechanisms needed "to develop and deploy new technologies to control carbon emissions." [LXP]

"Prospects for the Higgs Discovery at the Tevratron"
"Prospects for the Higgs Discovery at the Tevratron," by M. Roco, was presented at the International Europhysics Conference HEP '99. The report discusses the results of "a Fermilab study of the sensitivity for Higgs boson production at the upgraded Tevratron in Run II." One of the main goals of the Run II at the Tevratron is the search for the Higgs boson. [KR]

"Use of Low Altitude AVIRIS Data For Identifying Salt Affected Soil Surfaces in Western Fresno County, California"
This report, by Michael L. Whiting and Susan L. Ustin of the Center for Spatial Technology and Remote Sensing (CSTARS) at the University of California, assesses low altitude Airborne Visible and Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) data as a means of identifying "soil salinity and organic matter concentrations in soils." The report includes tables and color figures, in addition to the main text and partially hyperlinked references section. [LXP]

"The Interior of the Earth"
This concise brochure, "The Interior of the Earth," by Eugene C. Robertson, explains the basic make-up of the earth's interior. The text with useful graphics and tables describes the crust, mantle, and core. Altogether, the brochure makes for a brief, simple, and clear introduction to the earth's inner constitution. [KR]

Request for papers: The Journal of International Law & Policy
The Journal of International Law & Policy will publish a special symposium issue on the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species and Wild Animals (Bonn Convention) in mid to late 2000. Prospective authors should consult the "Guidelines for Authors" section at the journal's homepage. [LXP]

Rapid Bioassessment Protocols For Use in Streams and Wadeable Rivers: Periphyton, Benthic Macroinvertebrates, and Fish (Second Edition)
Michael T. Barbour and colleagues of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) provide the second edition of the publication Rapid Bioassessment Protocols For Use in Streams and Wadeable Rivers: Periphyton, Benthic Macroinvertebrates, and Fish. The document, which may be downloaded at the site, covers several important topics including "The Concept of Rapid Bioassessment," "Application of Rapid Bioassessment Protocols (RBPs)," "Elements of Biomonitoring," and "Performance-based Methods Systems," among others. [LXP]

Transforming Undergraduate Education in Science, Mathematics, Engineering, and Technology

The Committee on Undergraduate Science Education at the Center for Science, Mathematics, and Engineering Education (National Research Council) has recently released this publication on the transformation of undergraduate education. The report outlines six goals for improving undergraduate education and gives strategies for promoting and implementing each goal. The report may be browsed in full or by section. [LXP]
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Job Openings in Science and Technology from The Chronicle of Higher Education
Although The Chronicle of Higher Education charges a fee to access the current week's job listings, extensive postings for the previous week are freely available. [LXP], published by Emedia Science Ltd. in conjunction with Liverpool University, UK, contains job listings with a browse feature for chemists, biochemists, pharmaceutical scientists, and chemical engineers. Commercial and academic vacancies, as well as post-doctoral and student opportunities, are listed for USA & Canada, Europe, and the rest of the world. [KR]

Job Opportunities: Ducks Unlimited
Ducks Unlimited (DU), one of the most powerful hunting/ conservation organizations in North America, works "to fulfill the annual life cycle needs of North American waterfowl by protecting, enhancing, restoring and managing important wetlands and associated uplands." Jobs related to wetlands and waterfowl research and management are posted regularly at the DU Website. [LXP]

Science's Next Wave JobsNet
A useful, free site from Science's Next Wave (a project of the journal Science), JobsNet provides a network of science job listings. A good compilation of links to science job lists for North America, Europe, and Asia and the Pacific Rim can be found here. Science's own Professional Network is one of many resources annotated in this convenient metasite for job seekers. [KR]
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New Programs in Fusion Energy Science
The Office of Fusion Energy Sciences (OFES) of the Office of Science, US Department of Energy (DOE) is currently inviting grant applications for new research in fusion energy science. Grants are available for programs conducting research in areas of Magnetic Fusion Concept Exploration Experiments, Inertial Fusion Energy Concept Exploration Research, Inertial Fusion Energy Chamber and Target Research, Magnetic Fusion Liquid Wall Experiments, and Fusion Materials Modeling. Letters of intent are due by January, 31, 2000, and formal applications are due by February 29, 2000. [KR]

Microbial Observatories -- NSF
The National Science Foundation (NSF) has announced the Microbial Observatories program, dedicated to the discovery of previously unknown microbes and the description and characterization of "microbial diversity, phylogenetic relationships, interactions, and other novel properties" through the development of a network of sites or "microbial observatories." The proposal deadline is March 6, 2000. [LXP]

Research Innovation Awards
This Research Corporation program serves "to encourage innovation by scientists early in their academic careers." Open to new tenure track faculty members at PhD granting departments of astronomy, chemistry, or physics at research universities in the US or Canada, these Research Innovation Awards fund "research that transcends the ordinary and offers promise for significant discoveries." The awards are intended to help with equipment and supplies, graduate stipends for the academic year or summer, undergraduate student stipends, travel costs to use facilities not available on campus, and services or requirements essential to the research. Application proposals are due the first business day of May 2000. Qualified faculty should request an application package from Research Corporation. [KR]

Other Grant Opportunities (on Plants) -- PCA
The Plant Conservation Alliance (PCA) provides this modest list of funding opportunities for research and conservation of plants. Grants currently listed include the National Wildlife Federation's Species Recovery Fund (SRF) for $3,000-$7,000, the Catherine H. Beattie Fellowship for Conservation Horticulture for $1,000-$4,000, and The Herb Society of America for up to $5000. Deadline information and contact addresses are provided at the Website. [LXP]

Biocomplexity: Special Competition: Integrated Research to Understand and Model Complexity Among Biological, Physical, and Social Systems -- NSF
Also from the National Science Foundation (NSF), this special competition will support research projects "which directly explore nonlinearities, chaotic behavior, emergent phenomena or feedbacks within and between systems and/or integrate across multiple components or scales of time and space in order to better understand and predict the dynamic behavior of systems." The Biocomplexity program will also fund Incubation Activities "that enable groups of researchers who have not historically collaborated on biocomplexity research to develop projects via focused workshops, virtual meetings, and other types of development and planning activities." The deadline for a Message of Intent is 5:00 pm, January 31, 2000. The deadline for research proposals or Incubation Activities proposals is 5:00 pm, March 1, 2000. [LXP]
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Fourth International Conference on Integrating Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Environmental Modeling
The Fourth International Conference on Integrating Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Environmental Modeling will take place at the Banff Centre for Conferences in Banff, Alberta, Canada, from September 2 to 8, 2000. With initial funding from the National Science Foundation and many others, "the meeting provides a scientific and technical forum for improving spatio-temporal predictive modeling of processes, events, and phenomena for environmental problem solving." The deadline for paper abstracts has been extended to January 29, 2000. Note, parts of the conference Website may still be under construction. [KR]

Wood in World Rivers: First International Conference
The First international conference on Wood in World Rivers will be held at Oregon State University in Corvallis, Oregon, October 23-27, 2000. The objective of the conference will be "1) to summarize the state of knowledge (of wood in rivers) ..., 2) determine how to generalize geographically diverse information, and 3) tailor restoration and management of large wood in rivers to the different landscapes, rivers, forests, regions, and countries." Extended poster abstracts are due by August 15, 2000. [LXP]

Houston 2001: Civil Engineering Conference and Exposition
The American Society of Civil Engineers presents "Engineers in a Changing World," a Civil Engineering Conference and Exposition to be held in Houston, Texas, from October 10 to 13, 2001. Conference topics will include structures, transportation, energy, engineering management, computers and technology, education, construction, ports, geotechnical, environmental and water resources, and more. Paper proposals are due by May 19, 2000. [KR]

Seventeenth North American Prairie Conference
The Seventeenth North American Prairie Conference will be held in Mason City, Iowa, July 16-20, 2000. Iowa, which lies in the midst of the Prairie Pothole region, was once 80 percent prairie and boasted "an incredible array of different prairie communities." The deadline for abstracts is February 15, 2000. Interested participants may request further information about the program from the contact person listed at the Website. [LXP]
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New Data

Atomic Scattering Factors [.ps]
From the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory's Center for X-Ray Optics, these
"atomic scattering factors are based upon photoabsorption measurements of elements in their elemental state." These easy-to-use tables allow users to search out atomic scattering factor data by element and look up the x-ray properties of elements, the index of refraction for a compound material, the x-ray attenuation length of a solid, the x-ray transmission of a solid or a gas, and more. Most of the tables are accessed by way of an online query form with variables such as material, density, and photon energy range entered by the user. Most outputs come in plot form for quick viewing, or results may be retrieved as a text or postscript file for use with a personal plotting software. [KR]
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Bird Checklists of the United States -- NPWRC
The Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center (NPWRC) has compiled this useful database of state bird checklists, highlighting "the seasonal occurrence of birds in state, federal, and private management areas, nature preserves, and other areas of special interest in the United States." This compilation represents a substantial resource: users may access (and/or contribute to) 10-20 checklists per state, and each checklist locale is identified on a state color map. Depth of information varies among checklists, but each checklist offers at least a bird species list, with chronological and abundance information usually included. Of additional use, many checklists include descriptions of the surrounding area and date of printing. [LXP]
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Orbital Elements
Coordinates for tracking the International Space Station and the Mir Space Station are available here from NASA's Johnson Space Center Flight Design and Dynamics Division. The Orbital Elements page offers real-time data for use in ground track plotting programs. The site cautions the data are for ground track plotting programs only and "should not be used for precise applications or analysis!" [KR]
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Three from TIGR
Arabidopsis thaliana Database
Global Transposon Mutagenesis and a Minimal Mycoplasma Genome [.pdf]
The Deinococcus radiodurans Genome Database
The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR) has recently placed online three new genomic resources, in concert with three new publications. The complete genome sequence of chromosome II of Arabidopsis thaliana is now available online (Lin et al., 1999, Nature 402). Also of note, TIGR has released a description (.pdf format) of the minimal set of genes essential for life (Hutchison et al., 1999, Science 286:2165-2169). Finally, TIGR has recently made available the complete genome sequence of Deinococcus radiodurans (White et al., 1999, Science 286:1571-1577). [LXP]
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In The News

Deinococcus radiodurans: An Engineered Microbe With a Taste for Radioactive Waste
1) "Engineered bacterium eats toxic waste"
2) "Conan the Bacterium"
3) Design and Construction of Deinococcus radiodurans for Biodegradation of Organic Toxins at Radioactive Department of Energy Waste Sites
4) Life in Extreme Environments
5) The Deinococcus radiodurans Genome Database
See this week's New Data
6) Natural and Accelerated Bioremediation Research
7) Bioremediation of Metals & Radionuclides: What it is and How it Works [.pdf]
8) Hazardous Waste Clean-up Information
Bioremediation, or the use of micro-organisms to reduce, eliminate, or contain contaminants, is a growing and hopeful field. Toxic waste has always been a messy problem, but an engineered form of a bacterium called Deinococcus radiodurans has researchers excited about the use of this bacterium for toxic waste clean-up. In a recent study, D. radiodurans transformed radioactive toxic mercury compounds (which are a byproduct of nuclear production sites) into less toxic, less soluble chemical forms. The research by Michael Daly of the Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences, and others, appears in the January 2000 issue of Nature Biotechnology. Recently, researchers sequenced the entire genome of D. radiodurans. The hope is that modified versions of the bacterium may be used for purposes ranging from toxic waste clean-up to soaking up radiation on Mars to make the planet more hospitable to humans. At the forefront of bioremediation research, D. radiodurans, an extremophile which may have originated in the radioactive environment of early Earth, is the only bacterium known to resist high levels of radiation. This week's In the News focuses on bioremediation with an emphasis on the remarkable development of newly engineered forms of Deinococcus radiodurans.

The first resource is a news article from the Environmental News Network (1) describing the recent research on Deinococcus radiodurans. The second article (2), from NASA's Space Science News, gives a broader look at the bacterium with information on many potential scientific applications of D. radiodurans. Next, from the Environmental Management Science Program Research in Maryland, this page (3) is a page on Life in Extreme Environments. Among this in-depth resource on extremophiles is a Radiation Tolerance section with a number of links to further information on D. radiodurans. For those interested in the Deinococcus radiodurans Genome Database (see this week's Science and Engineering Report's New Data section for Three from TIGR), The Institute for Genomic Research (TIGR) has just released "the latest versions of the sequence data and related annotation" (5). The next two resources provide information on the larger field of bioremediation research. The first of these is the homepage for Natural and Accelerated Bioremediation Research (6), which offers bioremediation research descriptions, information, and publications. Among these publications is a primer on Bioremediation of Metals & Radionuclides: What it is and How it Works(7). Finally, from the Environmental Protection Agency's Technology Innovation Office, the Hazardous Waste Clean-up Information Website (8) provides "information about innovative treatment technologies to the hazardous waste remediation community."
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