posted July 27, 2012

George Weiblen, a curator at the Bell Museum of Natural History, is profiled on the OVPR’s Research blog. Dr. Weiblen and his team are identifying trees in 100 acres of New Guinea rain forest. MSI is currently working with Dr. Weiblen on a project to digitize collections at the Bell Museum. 


On June 27, two students visited MSI to learn about the MSI and the supercomputers. AJ (Alec) Olson and Jake Grisim, who are visually impaired, were given a tour of MSI by Yectli Huerta, HPC Systems Administrator, and Eric Badger, Student Technical Support Lead. AJ attends St. Croix Preparatory Academy and Jake attends Shakopee Middle School. Jake and AJ visited the machine room, where they learned about supercomputers and were able to touch and inspect various pieces of equipment. They are interested in careers in computers, and were eager to learn about the details of servers, networks, computer security, supercomputing hardware and software, and other details.

The students were accompanied by parents Jesse Grisim and Jill Olson and two teachers, Joya Bromeland (Teacher for Blind/Visually Impaired Students and Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist, St. Paul Public Schools) and Gail Morris (Teacher for Blind/Visually Impaired Students, Intermediate District 287).

posted June 26, 2012

The new head of the Department of Plant Biology, Gary Muehlbauer (Associate Fellow), is highlighted in an article on the College of Biological Sciences website. Professor Muehlbauer uses MSI resources to study the genomes of barley, wheat, soybeans, and maize. One project, for example, involves studying the gene-expression profiles of grains during infection with Fusarium graminearum, the pathogen that causes head blight, a virulent disease of grain worldwide. Learning about the genomes of important grains may allow researchers to develop varieties with higher yields and better disease resistance.


The Active Archive Alliance has released a case study about MSI’s Spectra Logic file archive system. The case study can be found on the linked page under the "University of Minnesota" header. 


The Active Archive Alliance is a collaborative industry association dedicated to educating users about options for online data archives. You can also read the press release announcing publication of the case study on their website.



The Office of the Vice President for Research has announced the winners of the 2012 Minnesota Futures grants. Both of the recipients are MSI Principal Investigators: Emad Ebbini (Electrical and Computer Engineering) and Lawrence Wackett (MSI Associate Fellow; Biochemistry, Molecular Biology, and Biophysics). The goal of the Minnesota Futures Grant Program is to promote new cross-disciplinary collaborations by University researchers. Grants are awarded to groups that have not worked together before.


Professor Ebbini and his collaborators will investigate image-guided targeted drug delivery, with the goal of improving treatment for liver cancer. The project by Professor Wackett and his collaborators will study environmental impacts of hydraulic fracturing (fracking). One of the collaborators in the Wackett group is MSI PI Lynda Ellis (Associate Fellow; Laboratory Medicine and Pathology).