Washington, DC— You know the old saying: Location, location, location? It turns out that it applies to the Amazon rainforest, too. New work from Carnegie’s Greg Asner illustrates a hidden tapestry of chemical variation across the lowland Peruvian Amazon, with plants in different areas producing an...
Explore this Story

Give to Carnegie

You Can Support Scientific Discovery.

Learn More

  • Youtube URL: 

    In the face of global climate change, increasing the use of renewable energy resources is one of the most urgent challenges facing the world. Further development of one resource, solar energy, is complicated by the need to find space for solar power-generating equipment without significantly altering the surrounding environment. New work from Carnegie found that the amount of energy that could be generated from solar equipment constructed on and around existing infrastructure in California would exceed the state’s demand by up to five times. 

    Watch This Video

Washington, DC— Carnegie’s Zhiyong Wang will receive the Humboldt Research Award, one of Germany’s most-prestigious prizes.

Granted by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation up to 100 times each year, the award honors academics “whose fundamental discoveries, new theories, or insights have had a significant impact on their own discipline and who are expected to continue producing cutting-edge achievements in the future.”

Explore this Story

Washington, DC— New work from Carnegie’s Alan Boss offers a potential solution to a longstanding problem in the prevailing theory of how rocky planets formed in our own Solar System, as well as in others. The snag he’s untangling: how dust grains in the matter orbiting a young protostar avoid getting dragged into the star before they accumulate into bodies large enough that their own gravity allows them to rapidly attract enough material to grow into planets.

Explore this Story

Washington, DC— Superconductivity is a rare physical state in which matter is able to conduct electricity—maintain a flow of electrons—without any resistance. It can only be found in certain materials, and even then it can only be achieved under controlled conditions of low temperatures and high pressures.

Explore this Story

Stay Connected

Sign Up to Receive Carnegie Communications. 

If you are interested in receiving any of our materials, learn more

Allan Spradling offers input to The Scientist on a paper about female Japanese rice fish producing sperm. More

Explore this Story
Andrew Steele joins the Rosetta team as a co-investigator working on the COSAC instrument aboard the Philae lander (Fred Goesmann Max Planck Institute - PI). On 12 November 2014 the Philae system will be deployed to land on the comet and begin operations. Before this, several analyses of the comet...
Explore this Project
Carnegie's Paul Butler has been leading work on a multiyear project to carry out the first reconnaissance of all 2,000 nearby Sun-like stars within 150 light-years of the solar system (1 lightyear is about 9.4 trillion kilometers). His team is currently monitoring about 1,700 stars, including 1,000...
Explore this Project
The WGESP was charged with acting as a focal point for research on extrasolar planets and organizing IAU activities in the field, including reviewing techniques and maintaining a list of identified planets. The WGESP developed a Working List of extrasolar planet candidates, subject to revision. In...
Explore this Project
Capital Science Evening Lectures
Thursday, September 17, 2015

Modern tomatoes lack the intense flavor of heirloom, grown in your back yard varieties. What exactly is “tomato flavor”? Where did it go and what can we do about it? We believe that better flavor...

Explore this Event
Seminars / Conferences
Monday, November 09, 2015 to Friday, November 13, 2015

 

About:

Physics and chemistry have arrived at a deep understanding of the non-living world. Can we expect to reach similar insights, integrating concepts and quantitative...

Explore this Event
Josh Simon uses observations of nearby galaxies to study problems related to dark matter, chemical evolution, star formation, and the process of galaxy evolution. In one area he looks at peculiarly dark galaxies. Interestingly, some galaxies are so dark they glow with the light of just a few...
Meet this Scientist
Eric Persson heads a group that develops and uses telescope instrumentation to exploit new near-infrared (IR) imaging array detectors. The team built a wide-field survey camera for the du Pont 2.5-meter telescope at Carnegie’s Las Campanas Observatory in Chile, and the first of two cameras for the...
Meet this Scientist
Anna Michalak joined Carnegie in 2011 from the Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space sciences at the University of Michigan. Her research focuses on characterizing complexity and quantifying uncertainty in environmental systems to improve our understanding of these systems and our ability to...
Meet this Scientist

Explore Carnegie Science

June 25, 2015

Washington, DC— New work from Carnegie’s Alan Boss offers a potential solution to a longstanding problem in the prevailing theory of how rocky planets formed in our own Solar System, as well as in others. The snag he’s untangling: how dust grains in the matter orbiting a young protostar avoid getting dragged into the star before they accumulate into bodies large enough that their own gravity allows them to rapidly attract enough material to grow into planets. The study is published by The Astrophysical Journal.

In the early stages of their formation, stars are surrounded by rotating disks of gas and dust. The dust grains in the disk collide and aggregate to form pebbles, which

June 22, 2015

Washington, DC—The interiors of several of our Solar System’s planets and moons are icy, and ice has been found on distant extrasolar planets, as well.  But these bodies aren’t filled with the regular kind of water ice that you avoid on the sidewalk in winter. The ice that’s found inside these objects must exist under extreme pressures and high-temperatures, and potentially contains salty impurities, too.

New research from a team including Carnegie’s Alexander Goncharov focuses on the physics underlying the formation of the types of ice that are stable under the paradoxical-seeming conditions likely to be found in planetary interiors. Their work, published by Proceedings of the

June 16, 2015

Washington, DC— Carnegie’s Zhiyong Wang will receive the Humboldt Research Award, one of Germany’s most-prestigious prizes.

Granted by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation up to 100 times each year, the award honors academics “whose fundamental discoveries, new theories, or insights have had a significant impact on their own discipline and who are expected to continue producing cutting-edge achievements in the future.”

Alexander von Humboldt was a geographer and naturalist who spent between 1799 and 1804 exploring Central and South America, and authored the seminal five-volume treatise on science Cosmos: A Sketch of the Physical Description of the Universe. 

June 15, 2015

Washington, DC— The matter that makes up distant planets and even-more-distant stars exists under extreme pressure and temperature conditions. This matter includes members of a family of seven elements called the noble gases, some of which—such as helium and neon—are household names. New work from a team of scientists led by Carnegie’s Alexander Goncharov used laboratory techniques to mimic stellar and planetary conditions, and observe how noble gases behave under these conditions, in order to better understand the atmospheric and internal chemistry of these celestial objects. Their work is published the week of June 15 by Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The team

September 17, 2015

Modern tomatoes lack the intense flavor of heirloom, grown in your back yard varieties. What exactly is “tomato flavor”? Where did it go and what can we do about it? We believe that better flavor leads directly to better, healthier food choices. So we have systematically taken apart the chemistry and genetics of flavor in order to understand and restore it to its former glory. Along the way we’ve learned some amazing things about the way we taste and smell that have major implications for foods.

Dr. Harry Klee, University of Florida, Horticultural Sciences Department

November 9, 2015

 

About:

Physics and chemistry have arrived at a deep understanding of the non-living world. Can we expect to reach similar insights, integrating concepts and quantitative explanation, in biology? Life at its origin should be particularly amenable to discovery of scientific laws governing biology, since it marks the point of departure from a predictable physical/chemical world to the novel and history-dependent living world. The origin of life problem is difficult because even the simplest living cell is highly evolved from the first steps toward life, of which little direct evidence remains. The conference aims to explore ways to build a deeper understanding of the nature of

Educators from the Carnegie Academy for Science Education (CASE), a division of the Carnegie Institution for Science (www.carnegiescience.edu),  joined the District of Columbia Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) to launch the DC STEM Network. STEM is an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering and Math education. The Network will unite community partners in a sustainable collective effort to design, guide, and advocate for transformative STEM learning opportunities for all DC students. The DC STEM Network joins similar initiatives in 24 other states as part of a nationwide network led by the Battelle Memorial Institute.

High-elevation, low relief surfaces are common on continents. These intercontinental plateaus influence river networks, climate, and the migration of plants and animals. How these plateaus form is not clear. Researchers are studying the geodynamic processes responsible for surface uplift in the Hangay in central Mongolia to better understand the origin of high topography in continental interiors.

This work focuses on characterizing the physical properties and structure of the lithosphere and sublithospheric mantle, and the timing, rate, and pattern of surface uplift in the Hangay. They are carrying out studies in geomorphology, geochronology, thermochronology, paleoaltimetry,

Coral reefs are havens for marine biodiversity and underpin the economies of many coastal communities. But they are very sensitive to changes in ocean chemistry resulting from greenhouse gas emissions, as well as to pollution, warming waters, overdevelopment, and overfishing. Reefs use a mineral called aragonite, a naturally occurring form of calcium carbonate, CaCO3, to make their skeletons.  When carbon dioxide, CO2, from the atmosphere is absorbed by the ocean, it forms carbonic acid—the same stuff that makes soda fizz--making the ocean more acidic and thus more difficult for many marine organisms to grow their shells and skeletons and threatening coral reefs globally.

Ken

The Carnegie-Spitzer-IMACS (CSI) survey, currently underway at the Magellan-Baade 6.5m telescope in Chile, has been specifically designed to characterize normal galaxies and their environments at a distance of about 4 billion years post Big Bang, expresses by astronomers as  z=1.5.

The survey selection is done using the Spitzer Space Telescope Legacy fields, which provides as close a selection by stellar mass as possible.

Using the IMACS infrared camera, the survey goal is to study galaxies down to low light magnitudes. The goal is to reduce the variance in the density of massive galaxies at these distances and times to accurately trace the evolution of the galaxy mass

Young investigator Martin Jonikas has broad ambitions: to transform our fundamental understanding of photosynthetic organisms by developing game-changing tools. In the long run, his lab aims to increase photosynthetic efficiency of crops, which could improve food production around the world.

When photosynthesis first evolved, the atmosphere contained much more carbon dioxide and much less oxygen than it does today. As a result, the photosynthetic machinery of many organisms may not be completely optimized for today’s environment.

The protein responsible for fixing carbon dioxide—called Rubisco—worked very well in the Earth’s early atmosphere. As photosynthetic organisms

Anat Shahar is pioneering a field that blends isotope geochemistry with high-pressure experiments to examine planetary cores and the Solar System’s formation, prior to planet formation, and how the planets formed and differentiated. Stable isotope geochemistry is the study of how physical and chemical processes can cause isotopes—atoms of an element with different numbers of neutrons-- to separate (called isotopic fractionation). Experimental petrology is a lab-based approach to increasing the pressure and temperature of materials to simulate conditions in the interior Earth or other planetary bodies.

Rocks and meteorites consist of isotopes that contain chemical fingerprints of

Volcanologist Diana Roman is interested in the mechanics of how magma moves through the Earth’s crust, and in the structure, evolution, and dynamics of volcanic conduit systems. Her ultimate goal is to understand the likelihood and timing of volcanic eruptions.

Most of Roman’s research focuses on understanding changes in seismicity and stress in response to the migration of magma through volcanic conduits, and on developing techniques and strategies for monitoring active or restless volcanoes through the analysis of high-frequency volcanic seismicity.

Roman is also interested in understanding the seismicity at quiet volcanoes, tectonic and hidden volcanic microearthquake

Matthew Evans wants to provide new tools for plant scientists to engineer better seeds for human needs. He focuses on one of the two phases to their life cycle. In the first phase, the sporophyte is the diploid generation—that is with two similar sets of chromosomes--that undergoes meiosis to produce cells called spores. Each spore divides forming a single set of chromosomes (haploid) --the gametophyte--which produces the sperm and egg cells.

Evans studies how the haploid genome is required for normal egg and sperm function. In flowering plants, the female gametophyte, called the embryo sac, consists of four cell types: the egg cell, the central cell, and two types of supporting