Ground-Truthing

Geology is the study of the earth; however programs such as GIS have allowed geology data collection to move indoors. If you’ve followed my posts you know that my research relies heavily on the data available for use in GIS and the analyses which can be done in the program. In order to do this we needed to determine how closely results from GIS match what’s actually happening on our fields. As I mentioned in the previous post, our task this week was to ground-truth our channel locations. Tuesday this week, a teammate and I visited the cotton-planted field surrounding Peace Hill Bed & Breakfast in Charles City County. Using a GPS unit, aerial photography and a topo map we walked the perimeter of the field marking locations of concentrated flow.

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Research thus far has been more than I expected.

As soon as I began, I was taught how to use Excel. For as long as I have used Microsoft, I never used Excel. My first assignment on Excel was to clean reaction time data, a very tedious task . It took me about two weeks to fully be comfortable using the program. I had so many questions that I was asking my professor or the graduate students working in the lab all the time. I made enough mistakes to have to start over a few times. That was an alarming situation for me because I had heard how far a simple mistake can set studies back. Being unnerved by that, I was moving at a very slow pace on that assignment.

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Undocumented Immigrants and the Health of Democracy

On the subject of democracy, allow me to speak for a moment about the political benefits of extending membership to undocumented immigrants who entered the United States at a young age.

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Civil Society’s Answer to Migration: Education

In my last post, I expanded on the importance of permanent residents in the United States to express consent. I will not attempt to provide a mechanism by which native-born citizens can accomplish, but I would like to return to the particular group on which this blog is focused – undocumented immigrants who enter the United States at a young age. I previously suggested that it is irrelevant (at least in this discussion) whether these individuals consented to come to the United States, but that it is essential for them to explicitly agree to be governed and to join the civil society if they intend to stay.

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Silver Nanoprisms vs. Silver Nanospheres: The Battle Ensues.

Hey Everyone,

So far this summer has been exciting… and confusing. I have spent the majority of my summer working on optimizing substrates for surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS). I began the summer synthesizing nanoprisms of different sizes to determine what size had the greatest effect on the SERS enhancement factor (EF) and comparing the produced EF to the EF of our current subsrtate, silver nanospheres. It is hypothesized in the literature and from an analysis of the theory behind the SERS EF phenomena that nanoprisms will create greater EFs due to the local surface plasmon resonance and the dipoles and quadropoles of the nanoprism.

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