Science and technology in the United States has a long history, producing many important figures and developments in the field. The United States of America came into being around the Age of Enlightenment (1685 to 1815), an era in Western philosophy in which writers and thinkers, rejecting the perceived superstitions of the past, instead chose to emphasize the intellectual, scientific and cultural life, centered upon the 18th century, in which reason was advocated as the primary source for legitimacy and authority. Enlightenment philosophers envisioned a "republic of science," where ideas would be exchanged freely and useful knowledge would improve the lot of all citizens.
The United States Constitution itself reflects the desire to encourage scientific creativity. It gives the United States Congress the power "to promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries." This clause formed the basis for the U.S. patent and copyright systems, whereby creators of original art and technology would get a government granted monopoly, which after a limited period would become free to all citizens, thereby enriching the public domain.
In the early decades of its history, the United States was relatively isolated from Europe and also rather poor. At this stage, America's scientific infrastructure was still quite primitive compared to the long-established societies, institutes, and universities in Europe.
Eight of America's founding fathers were scientists of some repute. Benjamin Franklin conducted a series of experiments that deepened human understanding of electricity. Among other things, he proved what had been suspected but never before shown: that lightning is a form of electricity. Franklin also invented such conveniences as bifocal eyeglasses. Franklin also conceived the mid-room furnace, the "Franklin Stove". However, Franklin's design was flawed, in that his furnace vented the smoke from its base: because the furnace lacked a chimney to "draw" fresh air up through the central chamber, the fire would soon go out. It took David R. Rittenhouse, another hero of early Philadelphia, to improve Franklin's design by adding an L-shaped exhaust pipe that drew air through the furnace and vented its smoke up and along the ceiling, then into an intramural chimney and out of the house.
Thomas Jefferson (1743–1826), was among the most influential leaders in early America; during the American Revolutionary War (1775–83), Jefferson served in the Virginia legislature, the Continental Congress, was governor of Virginia, later serving as U.S. minister to France, U.S. secretary of state, vice president under John Adams (1735–1826), writer of the Declaration of Independence and the third U.S. president. During Jefferson's two terms in office (1801–1809), the U.S. purchased the Louisiana Territory and Lewis and Clark explored the vast new acquisition. After leaving office, he retired to his Virginia plantation, Monticello, and helped spearhead the University of Virginia. Jefferson was also a student of agriculture who introduced various types of rice, olive trees, and grasses into the New World. He stressed the scientific aspect of the Lewis and Clark expedition (1804–06), which explored the Pacific Northwest, and detailed, systematic information on the region's plants and animals was one of that expedition's legacies.
Like Franklin and Jefferson, most American scientists of the late 18th century were involved in the struggle to win American independence and forge a new nation. These scientists included the astronomer David Rittenhouse, the medical scientist Benjamin Rush, and the natural historian Charles Willson Peale.
During the American Revolution, Rittenhouse helped design the defenses of Philadelphia and built telescopes and navigation instruments for the United States' military services. After the war, Rittenhouse designed road and canal systems for the state of Pennsylvania. He later returned to studying the stars and planets and gained a worldwide reputation in that field.
As United States Surgeon General, Benjamin Rush saved countless lives of soldiers during the American Revolutionary War by promoting hygiene and public health practices. By introducing new medical treatments, he made the Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia an example of medical enlightenment, and after his military service, Rush established the first free clinic in the United States.
Charles Willson Peale is best remembered as an artist, but he also was a natural historian, inventor, educator, and politician. He created the first major museum in the United States, the Peale Museum in Philadelphia, which housed the young nation's only collection of North American natural history specimens. Peale excavated the bones of an ancient mastodon near West Point, New York; he spent three months assembling the skeleton, and then displayed it in his museum. The Peale Museum started an American tradition of making the knowledge of science interesting and available to the general public.
American political leaders' enthusiasm for knowledge also helped ensure a warm welcome for scientists from other countries. A notable early immigrant was the British chemist Joseph Priestley, who was driven from his homeland because of his dissenting politics. Priestley, who went to the United States in 1794, was the first of thousands of talented scientists who emigrated in search of a free, creative environment.
Other scientists had come to the United States to take part in the nation's rapid growth. Alexander Graham Bell, who arrived from Scotland by way of Canada in 1872, developed and patented the telephone and related inventions. Charles Proteus Steinmetz, who came from Germany in 1889, developed new alternating-current electrical systems at General Electric Company, and Vladimir Zworykin, an immigrant from Russia in 1919 arrived in the States bringing his knowledge of x-rays and cathode ray tubes and later won his first patent on a television system he invented. The Serbian Nikola Tesla went to the United States in 1884, and would later adapted the principle of rotating magnetic field in the development of an alternating current induction motor and polyphase system for the generation, transmission, distribution and use of electrical power.
Into the early 1900s, Europe remained the center of science research, notably in England and Germany. From the 1920s onwards, the tensions heralding the onset of World War II spurred sporadic but steady scientific emigration, or "brain drain", in Europe. Many of these emigrants were Jewish scientists, fearing the repercussions of anti-Semitism, especially in Germany and Italy, and sought sanctuary in the United States. One of the first to do so was Albert Einstein in 1933. At his urging, and often with his support, a good percentage of Germany's theoretical physics community, previously the best in the world, left for the United States. Enrico Fermi, came from Italy in 1938 and led the work that produced the world's first self-sustaining nuclear chain reaction. Many other scientists of note moved to the US during this same emigration wave, including Niels Bohr, Victor Weisskopf, Otto Stern, and Eugene Wigner.
Several scientific and technological breakthroughs during the Atomic Age were the handiwork of such immigrants, who recognized the potential threats and uses of new technology. For instance, it was the German professor Einstein and his Hungarian colleague, Leó Szilárd, who took the initiative and convinced President Franklin D. Roosevelt to pursue the pivotal Manhattan Project. Many physicists instrumental to the project were also European immigrants, such as the Hungarian Edward Teller, "father of the hydrogen bomb," and German Nobel laureate Hans Bethe. Their scientific contributions, combined with Allied resources and facilities helped establish the United States during World War II as an unrivaled scientific juggernaut. In fact, the Manhattan Project's Operation Alsos and its components, while not designed to recruit European scientists, successfully collected and evaluated Axis military scientific research at the end of the war, especially that of the German nuclear energy project, only to conclude that it was years behind its American counterpart.
When World War II ended, the United States, the United Kingdom and the Soviet Union were all intent on capitalizing on Nazi research and competed for the spoils of war. While President Harry S. Truman refused to provide sanctuary to ideologically committed members of the Nazi party, the Office of Strategic Services introduced Operation Paperclip, conducted under the Joint Intelligence Objectives Agency. This program covertly offered otherwise ineligible intellectuals and technicians white-washed dossiers, biographies, and employment. Ex-Nazi scientists overseen by the JIOA had been employed by the US military since the defeat of the Nazi regime in Project Overcast, but Operation Paperclip ventured to systematically allocate German nuclear and aerospace research and scientists to military and civilian posts, beginning in August 1945. Until the program's termination in 1990, Operation Paperclip was said to have recruited over 1,600 such employees in a variety of professions and disciplines.
In the first phases of Operation Paperclip, these recruits mostly included aerospace engineers from the German V-2 combat rocket program, experts in aerospace medicine and synthetic fuels. Perhaps the most influential of these was Wernher Von Braun, who had worked on the Aggregate rockets (the first rocket program to reach outer space), and chief designer of the V-2 rocket program. Upon reaching American soil, Von Braun first worked on the U.S. Air Force ICBM program before his team was reassigned to NASA. Often credited as “The Father of Rocket Science,” his work on the Redstone rocket and the successful deployment of the Explorer 1 satellite as a response to Sputnik 1 marked the beginning of the American Space program, and therefore, of the Space Race. Von Braun’s subsequent development of the Saturn V booster for NASA in the mid-to late sixties resulted in the first manned moon landing, the Apollo 11 mission, in 1969.
In the post-war era, the US was left in a position of unchallenged scientific leadership, being one of the few industrial countries not ravaged by war. Additionally, science and technology were seen to have greatly added to the Allied war victory, and were seen as absolutely crucial in the Cold War era. This enthusiasm simultaneously rejuvenated American industry, and celebrated Yankee ingenuity, instilling a zealous nationwide investment in "Big Science" and state-of-the-art government funded facilities and programs. This state patronage presented appealing careers to the intelligentsia, and further consolidated the scientific preeminence of the United States. As a result, the US government became, for the first time, the largest single supporter of basic and applied scientific research. By the mid-1950s the research facilities in the US were second to none, and scientists were drawn to the US for this reason alone. The changing pattern can be seen in the winners of the Nobel Prize in physics and chemistry. During the first half-century of Nobel Prizes – from 1901 to 1950 – American winners were in a distinct minority in the science categories. Since 1950, Americans have won approximately half of the Nobel Prizes awarded in the sciences. See the List of Nobel laureates by country.
The American Brain Gain continued throughout the Cold War, as tensions steadily escalated in the Eastern Bloc, resulting in a steady trickle of defectors, refugees and emigrants. The partition of Germany, for one, precipitated over three and a half million East Germans – the Republikflüchtling - to cross into West Berlin by 1961. Most of them were young, well-qualified, educated professionals or skilled workers - the intelligentsia - exacerbating human capital flight in the GDR to the benefit of Western countries, including the United States.
During the 19th century, Britain, France, and Germany were at the forefront of new ideas in science and mathematics. But if the United States lagged behind in the formulation of theory, it excelled in using theory to solve problems: applied science. This tradition had been born of necessity. Because Americans lived so far from the well-springs of Western science and manufacturing, they often had to figure out their own ways of doing things. When Americans combined theoretical knowledge with "Yankee ingenuity", the result was a flow of important inventions. The great American inventors include Robert Fulton (the steamboat); Samuel Morse (the telegraph); Eli Whitney (the cotton gin); Cyrus McCormick (the reaper); and Thomas Alva Edison, the most fertile of them all, with more than a thousand inventions credited to his name.
Edison was not always the first to devise a scientific application, but he was frequently the one to bring an idea to a practical finish. For example, the British engineer Joseph Swan built an incandescent electric lamp in 1860, almost 20 years before Edison. But Edison's light bulbs lasted much longer than Swan's, and they could be turned on and off individually, while Swan's bulbs could be used only in a system where several lights were turned on or off at the same time. Edison followed up his improvement of the light bulb with the development of electrical generating systems. Within 30 years, his inventions had introduced electric lighting into millions of homes.
Another landmark application of scientific ideas to practical uses was the innovation of the brothers Wilbur and Orville Wright. In the 1890s they became fascinated with accounts of German glider experiments and began their own investigation into the principles of flight. Combining scientific knowledge and mechanical skills, the Wright brothers built and flew several gliders. Then, on December 17, 1903, they successfully flew the first heavier-than-air, mechanically propelled airplane.
An American invention that was barely noticed in 1947 went on to usher in the Information Age. In that year John Bardeen, William Shockley, and Walter Brattain of Bell Laboratories drew upon highly sophisticated principles of quantum physics to invent the transistor, a small substitute for the bulky vacuum tube. This, and a device invented 10 years later, the integrated circuit, made it possible to package enormous amounts of electronics into tiny containers. As a result, book-sized computers of today can outperform room-sized computers of the 1960s, and there has been a revolution in the way people live – in how they work, study, conduct business, and engage in research.
Part of America's past and current preeminence in applied science has been due to its vast research and development budget, which at $401.6bn in 2009 was more than double that of China's $154.1bn and over 25% greater than the European Union's $297.9bn.
One of the most spectacular – and controversial – accomplishments of US technology has been the harnessing of nuclear energy. The concepts that led to the splitting of the atom were developed by the scientists of many countries, but the conversion of these ideas into the reality of nuclear fission was accomplished in the United States in the early 1940s, both by many Americans but also aided tremendously by the influx of European intellectuals fleeing the growing conflagration sparked by Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini in Europe.
During these crucial years, a number of the most prominent European scientists, especially physicists, immigrated to the United States, where they would do much of their most important work; these included Hans Bethe, Albert Einstein, Enrico Fermi, Leó Szilárd, Edward Teller, Felix Bloch, Emilio Segrè, and Eugene Wigner, among many, many others. American academics worked hard to find positions at laboratories and universities for their European colleagues.
After German physicists split a uranium nucleus in 1938, a number of scientists concluded that a nuclear chain reaction was feasible and possible. The Einstein–Szilárd letter to President Franklin D. Roosevelt warned that this breakthrough would permit the construction of "extremely powerful bombs." This warning inspired an executive order towards the investigation of using uranium as a weapon, which later was superseded during World War II by the Manhattan Project the full Allied effort to be the first to build an atomic bomb. The project bore fruit when the first such bomb was exploded in New Mexico on July 16, 1945.
The development of the bomb and its use against Japan in August 1945 initiated the Atomic Age, a time of anxiety over weapons of mass destruction that has lasted through the Cold War and down to the anti-proliferation efforts of today. Even so, the Atomic Age has also been characterized by peaceful uses of nuclear power, as in the advances in nuclear power and nuclear medicine.
Along with the production of the atomic bomb, World War II also began an era known as "Big Science" with increased government patronage of scientific research. The advantage of a scientifically and technologically sophisticated country became all too apparent during wartime, and in the ideological Cold War to follow the importance of scientific strength in even peacetime applications became too much for the government to any more leave to philanthropy and private industry alone. This increased expenditure on scientific research and education propelled the United States to the forefront of the international scientific community—an amazing feat for a country which only a few decades before still had to send its most promising students to Europe for extensive scientific education.
The first US commercial nuclear power plant started operation in Illinois in 1956. At the time, the future for nuclear energy in the United States looked bright. But opponents criticized the safety of power plants and questioned whether safe disposal of nuclear waste could be assured. A 1979 accident at Three Mile Island in Pennsylvania turned many Americans against nuclear power. The cost of building a nuclear power plant escalated, and other, more economical sources of power began to look more appealing. During the 1970s and 1980s, plans for several nuclear plants were cancelled, and the future of nuclear power remains in a state of uncertainty in the United States.
Meanwhile, American scientists have been experimenting with other renewable energy, including solar power. Although solar power generation is still not economical in much of the United States, recent developments might make it more affordable.
For the past 80 years, the United States has been integral in fundamental advances in telecommunications and technology. For example, AT&T's Bell Laboratories spearheaded the American technological revolution with a series of inventions including the first practical light emitted diode (LED), the transistor, the C programming language, and the Unix computer operating system. SRI International and Xerox PARC in Silicon Valley helped give birth to the personal computer industry, while ARPA and NASA funded the development of the ARPANET and the Internet.
Herman Hollerith was just a twenty-year-old engineer when he realized the need for a better way for the U.S. government to conduct their Census and then proceeded to develop electromechanical tabulators for that purpose. The net effect of the many changes from the 1880 census: the larger population, the data items to be collected, the Census Bureau headcount, the scheduled publications, and the use of Hollerith's electromechanical tabulators, was to reduce the time required to process the census from eight years for the 1880 census to six years for the 1890 census. That kick started The Tabulating Machine Company. By the 1960s, the company name had been changed to International Business Machines, and IBM dominated business computing. IBM revolutionized the industry by bringing out the first comprehensive family of computers (the System/360). It caused many of their competitors to either merge or go bankrupt, leaving IBM in an even more dominant position. IBM is known for its many inventions like the floppy disk, introduced in 1971, supermarket checkout products, and introduced in 1973, the IBM 3614 Consumer Transaction Facility, an early form of today's Automatic Teller Machines.
Running almost in tandem with the Atomic Age has been the Space Age. American Robert Goddard was one of the first scientists to experiment with rocket propulsion systems. In his small laboratory in Worcester, Massachusetts, Goddard worked with liquid oxygen and gasoline to propel rockets into the atmosphere, and in 1926 successfully fired the world's first liquid-fuel rocket which reached a height of 12.5 meters. Over the next 10 years, Goddard's rockets achieved modest altitudes of nearly two kilometers, and interest in rocketry increased in the United States, Britain, Germany, and the Soviet Union.
As Allied forces advanced during World War II, both the American and Russian forces searched for top German scientists who could be claimed as spoils for their country. The American effort to bring home German rocket technology in Operation Paperclip, and the bringing of German rocket scientist Wernher von Braun (who would later sit at the head of a NASA center) stand out in particular.
Expendable rockets provided the means for launching artificial satellites, as well as manned spacecraft. In 1957 the Soviet Union launched the first satellite, Sputnik I, and the United States followed with Explorer I in 1958. The first manned space flights were made in early 1961, first by Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin and then by American astronaut Alan Shepard.
From those first tentative steps, to the 1969 Apollo program landing on the Moon and the partially reusable Space Shuttle, the American space program brought forth a breathtaking display of applied science. Communications satellites transmit computer data, telephone calls, and radio and television broadcasts. Weather satellites furnish the data necessary to provide early warnings of severe storms. Global positioning satellites were first developed in the US starting around 1972, and became fully operational by 1994. Interplanetary probes and space telescopes began a golden age of planetary science and advanced a wide variety of astronomical work.
As in physics and chemistry, Americans have dominated the Nobel Prize for physiology or medicine since World War II. The private sector has been the focal point for biomedical research in the United States, and has played a key role in this achievement.
As of 2000, for-profit industry funded 57%, non-profit private organizations such as the Howard Hughes Medical Institute funded 7%, and the tax-funded National Institutes of Health (NIH) funded 36% of medical research in the United States. However, by 2003, the NIH funded only 28% of medical research funding; funding by private industry increased 102% from 1994 to 2003.
The NIH consists of 24 separate institutes in Bethesda, Maryland. The goal of NIH research is knowledge that helps prevent, detect, diagnose, and treat disease and disability. At any given time, grants from the NIH support the research of about 35,000 principal investigators. Five Nobel Prize-winners have made their prize-winning discoveries in NIH laboratories.
NIH research has helped make possible numerous medical achievements. For example, mortality from heart disease, the number-one killer in the United States, dropped 41 percent between 1971 and 1991. The death rate for strokes decreased by 59 percent during the same period. Between 1991 and 1995, the cancer death rate fell by nearly 3 percent, the first sustained decline since national record-keeping began in the 1930s. And today more than 70 percent of children who get cancer are cured.
With the help of the NIH, molecular genetics and genomics research have revolutionized biomedical science. In the 1980s and 1990s, researchers performed the first trial of gene therapy in humans and are now able to locate, identify, and describe the function of many genes in the human genome.
Research conducted by universities, hospitals, and corporations also contributes to improvement in diagnosis and treatment of disease. NIH funded the basic research on Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), for example, but many of the drugs used to treat the disease have emerged from the laboratories of the American pharmaceutical industry; those drugs are being tested in research centers across the country.
The Arthur H. Compton House is a historic house at 5637 South Woodlawn Avenue in Chicago, Illinois. Built in 1916, it was the residence of physicist Arthur Compton (1892-1962) from the late 1920s until 1945. Compton discovered the Compton Effect in 1923, proving that light has both a particle and a wave aspect. Compton received the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1927 for this discovery. His house was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1976.Assembly line
An assembly line is a manufacturing process (often called a progressive assembly) in which parts (usually interchangeable parts) are added as the semi-finished assembly moves from workstation to workstation where the parts are added in sequence until the final assembly is produced. By mechanically moving the parts to the assembly work and moving the semi-finished assembly from work station to work station, a finished product can be assembled faster and with less labor than by having workers carry parts to a stationary piece for assembly.
Assembly lines are common methods of assembling complex items such as automobiles and other transportation equipment, household appliances and electronic goods.Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs
The Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs (OES) is a bureau within the United States Department of State. It coordinates a portfolio of issues related to the world's oceans, environment, science and technology, and health.Chief Technology Officer of the United States
The United States Chief Technology Officer (US CTO), also formally an Assistant to the President, is in the Office of Science and Technology Policy. This position was created within the Office of Science and Technology Policy by President Barack Obama. The U.S. CTO helps the President and their team harness the power of data, innovation and technology on behalf of the American People. The team works closely with others both across and outside government on a broad range of work to upgrade government capability including using applied technology to help create jobs, creating paths to improve government services with lower costs, higher quality and increased transparency, helping upgrade agencies to use open data and expanding their data science capabilities, reduce the costs of health care and criminal justice, increase access to broadband, bring technical talent into government for policy and modern operations input, improve community innovation engagement by agencies working on local challenges, and help keep the nation secure.Doppler on Wheels
Doppler on Wheels (or DOW) is a fleet of X-band radar trucks maintained by the Center for Severe Weather Research (CSWR) in Boulder, Colorado, led by principal investigator Joshua Wurman, with the funding largely provided by the National Science Foundation (NSF). The DOW fleet and its associated Mobile Mesonet and Pod deployable weather stations are Lower Atmospheric Observing Facilities (LAOF) "National Facilities" supporting a wide variety NSF-sponsored research.Federal Chief Information Officer of the United States
The Federal Chief Information Officer of the United States, also known as the United States Chief Information Officer, is the administrator of the Office of Electronic Government, which is part of the Office of Management and Budget. The President appoints the Federal CIO. The appointee does not require Senate confirmation. It was created by the E-Government Act of 2002.The US CIO oversees federal technology spending, federal IT policy, and strategic planning of all federal IT investments. The CIO is charged with establishing a government-wide enterprise architecture that ensures system interoperability, information sharing, and maintains effective information security and privacy controls across the federal government.Fordism
Fordism is the basis of modern economic and social systems in industrialized, standardized mass production and mass consumption. The concept is named for Henry Ford. It is used in social, economic, and management theory about production, working conditions, consumption, and related phenomena, especially regarding the 20th century.GW151226
GW151226 was a gravitational wave signal detected by the LIGO observatory on 25 December 2015 local time (26 Dec 2015 UTC). On 15 June 2016, the LIGO and Virgo collaborations announced that they had verified the signal, making it the second such signal confirmed, after GW150914, which had been announced four months earlier the same year, and the third gravitational wave signal detected.LZ experiment
The LUX-Zeplin (LZ) experiment is a WIMP detector. The international collaboration constructing it formed in 2012 by combining the LUX and ZEPLIN groups. It is to be located at the Sanford Underground Research Facility (SURF) in South Dakota, and managed by DOE’s Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (Berkeley Lab). The LZ experiment is a next-generation dark matter direct detection experiment. When completed, the experiment will be the world’s most sensitive experiment for WIMPs (Weakly Interacting Massive Particles) over a large range of WIMP masses In the spring of 2015, LZ passed the ‘Critical Decision Step 1’ or CD-1 review, and became an official DOE project.. As of 2018, the installation of the experiment is expected 2019 and start of data collecting 2020.
LZ is a collaboration of 30 institutes in the US, UK, Portugal and Russia. Henrique Araújo from the Imperial College of London leads the UK team on LZ.National Science and Technology Council
The National Science and Technology Council (NSTC) was established in the US by Executive Order 12881 on November 23, 1993.Office of Science
The Office of Science is a component of the United States Department of Energy (DOE). The Office of Science is the lead federal agency supporting fundamental scientific research for energy and the Nation’s largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences. The Office of Science portfolio has two principal thrusts: direct support of scientific research and direct support of the development, construction, and operation of unique, open-access scientific user facilities that are made available for use by external researchers.
The Office of Science manages this research portfolio through six interdisciplinary scientific program offices: Advanced Scientific Computing Research, Basic Energy Sciences, Biological and Environmental Research, Fusion Energy Sciences, High Energy Physics and Nuclear Physics. The Office of Science also has responsibility for 10 of the 17 United States Department of Energy National Laboratories.The office is the predominant U.S. federal government sponsor for research in the physical sciences, including physics, chemistry, computer science, applied mathematics, materials science, nanoscience, and engineering, as well as systems biology and environmental sciences. The Office of Science makes extensive use of peer review and federal advisory committees to develop general directions for research investments, to identify priorities, and to determine the very best scientific proposals to support.
The 10 Office of Science national laboratories are: Ames Laboratory, Argonne National Laboratory, Brookhaven National Laboratory, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, and the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility.Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center
The Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center (PSC) is a high performance computing and networking center founded in 1986. PSC is a joint effort of Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Pittsburgh together with Westinghouse Electric Company in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States. The center's Scientific Directors are Dr. Ralph Roskies of the University of Pittsburgh and Dr. Michael Levine of Carnegie Mellon University.In addition to providing a family of Big Data-optimized supercomputers with unique shared memory architectures, PSC features the National Institutes of Health-sponsored National Resource for Biomedical Supercomputing, an Advanced Networking Group that conducts research on network performance and analysis, and a STEM education and outreach program supporting K-20 education. In 2012, PSC established a new Public Health Applications Group that will apply supercomputing resources to problems in preventing, monitoring and responding to epidemics and other public health needs.Protein Data Bank
The Protein Data Bank (PDB) is a database for the three-dimensional structural data of large biological molecules, such as proteins and nucleic acids. The data, typically obtained by X-ray crystallography, NMR spectroscopy, or, increasingly, cryo-electron microscopy, and submitted by biologists and biochemists from around the world, are freely accessible on the Internet via the websites of its member organisations (PDBe, PDBj, RCSB, and BMRB). The PDB is overseen by an organization called the Worldwide Protein Data Bank, wwPDB.
The PDB is a key in areas of structural biology, such as structural genomics. Most major scientific journals, and some funding agencies, now require scientists to submit their structure data to the PDB. Many other databases use protein structures deposited in the PDB. For example, SCOP and CATH classify protein structures, while PDBsum provides a graphic overview of PDB entries using information from other sources, such as Gene ontology.SAGE (Soviet–American Gallium Experiment)
SAGE (Soviet–American Gallium Experiment, or sometimes Russian-American Gallium Experiment) is a collaborative experiment devised by several prominent physicists to measure the solar neutrino flux.Science Friday
Science Friday (known as SciFri for short) is a weekly call-in talk show that broadcasts each Friday on public radio stations, distributed by WNYC Studios. SciFri is hosted by award-winning science journalist Ira Flatow and was created and is produced by ScienceFriday, Inc. The program is divided into two, one-hour programs, with each hour ending with a complete sign-off. The focus of each program is news and information on nature, science, and technology. For most of its existence, Science Friday was a sub-program within Talk of the Nation; it was spun off as a series in its own right when Talk of the Nation was canceled in June 2013.
Science Friday is also available in a podcasting format and is one of the most popular iTunes downloads, frequently in the top 15 downloads each week. SciFri podcasts are downloaded over 23 million times per year and over 1.3 million listeners tune in each week to hear the program. It is also carried via Sirius XM Radio. In addition to the program, SciFri creates original videos and educational materials, all available on its website.SciFri broadcasts excerpts from the annual Ig Nobel Prize ceremony on the Friday after Thanksgiving.Science Friday maintained an island (Science Friday Island) in Second Life, including an open-air theater with live audio and video feeds of the broadcast. That venue is no longer in operation.Single-grain experiment
The single-grain experiment was an experiment carried out at the University of Wisconsin–Madison from May 1907 to 1911. The experiment tested if cows could survive on a single type of grain. The experiment would lead to the development of modern nutritional science.The Heroic Age of American Invention
The Heroic Age of American Invention is a 1961 science book for children by L. Sprague de Camp, published by Doubleday. It was reprinted in 1993 by Barnes & Noble under the title Heroes of American Invention.Timeline of the Space Race
This is a timeline of first achievements in spaceflight from the first intercontinental ballistic missile through the first multinational human-crewed mission—spanning the era of the Space Race. Two days after the United States announced its intention to launch an artificial satellite, on July 31, 1956, the Soviet Union announced its intention to do the same. Sputnik 1 was launched on October 4, 1957, beating the United States and stunning people all over the world.United States Department of Energy national laboratories
The United States Department of Energy National Laboratories and Technology Centers are a system of facilities and laboratories overseen by the United States Department of Energy (DOE) for the purpose of advancing science and technology to fulfill the DOE mission. Sixteen of the seventeen DOE national laboratories are federally funded research and development centers administered, managed, operated and staffed by private-sector organizations under management and operating (M&O) contract with DOE.
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