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Vol 89 No 13 - April 2, 2012

Norway, Land of the Midnight Sun

Presented By: Bob Sorensen

Bob Sorensen

Bob Sorensen

Bob is a long-time Scientech member and past president. His professional career was in education with Ivy Tech and Purdue.

All four of his grandparents were born in Norway and he has visited eight times. He encouraged us to learn of our ethnic/cultural heritage and pass it on to our descendents.

Norway's population is about 5 million. More people of Norwegian ancestry live in the U.S. than in Norway. The population is concentrated in the south of the country. The geography is mountainous with many fjords. The highest mountains are at about 8,000 feet. It is 150,000 square miles with less than 5% cultivated. The country is 1,000 miles long. One third is above the Arctic Circle. Only Iceland has a lower population density. There are 33 persons per square mile.

The most famous Norwegians in the arts are: Edvard Grieg - composer, Edvard Munch - artist/painter, Gustav Vigeland - sculptor, Henrik Ibsen - playwright. Popular folk arts are rosemaling (decorative painted plates), most notably by Per Lysne, kolrosing (wood carving) and glass blowing.

The Nobel Peace Prize is given in Oslo, instead of Stockholm as are the other Nobel prizes, per decree of Albert Nobel. The Grand Hotel is the venue. Bob stayed in the Grand during the 2008 Nobel awards and met the Kenyan recipient, Wangari Muta Maathai.

The Constitution was adopted in 1814, creating a constitutional monarchy. During WWII King Haakon VII escaped to England with the royal family and its gold. Prince Gustav spent the war in the U.S. Germany invaded and occupied Norway, because it wanted to insure the transport of iron ore from Norway. A benefit to the Allies was that many German troops remained in Norway and were thus unable to defend against the Allied invasion of Normandy and recapture of Europe.

The Germans established the puppet government of Quisling, who was tried and executed for treason after the War. The Resistance was very active as were Allied commando actions. The German heavy water plant at Rjukan was severely damaged and then the ferry which was carrying the heavy water was sunk en route to Germany.

Norway has a high standard of living, high incomes and high taxes. It is a welfare state which provides universal education and healthcare. There is no concept of trespassing on property in the sense that all land is open to public access for walking. Tax/income information is made public.

Ninety nine per cent of electricity is from hydropower. Norwegian engineers are world leaders in tunneling, roads and oil. English is a required course in school from second or third grade, so it's their second language.

Immigration is an increasingly tense issue. While Norway historically exported its people, that trend has reversed. The most common birth name in Oslo last year was Mohammed.

Click HERE to view the Power Point slides used in this talk

Scribe: Jeff Rasley

Vol 89 No 14 - April 9, 2012

Looking for the First Flower in Northeast China

Presented By: David Dilcher, Professor Emeritus, Departments of Geology and Biology, IU Bloomington

David Dilcher

Dr. David Dilcher

Today's speaker, introduced by Scientech Club member, Paul Hyslop, began his doctoral work at Yale University in 1954. In 1965 he left Yale to become a professor at Indiana University and has subsequently co-authored over 200 scientific papers. His most prestigious award has been his election in 1989 as a member of the American National Academy of Sciences in Washington, DC.

What began as a simple question to Al Gore's senatorial aid resulted in a 1,000-page document with a complex title in an effort to petition for financial support for "small" science. This is what led to Professor Dilcher's quest to find the first flower. He began his research in Kansas but eventually was lead to an outcropping in Liaoning Province, Northeast China where the sediment dated back between 126 and 127 million years ago. In this province Professor Dilcher was convinced of the origin and early evolution of the angiosperms, specifically Archaefructus Liaoningensis.

Since flowers are the world's first advertisers, with their pleasing patterns, bright colors and brilliant fragrances, Professor Dilcher began with these questions: 1) When do we find the first flower? and 2) What was the first flower?

In asking these questions, he soon discovered that the better questions to ask were: 1) In what biotic environments did angiosperms evolve? 2) How did these environments affect their evolution? and 3) What are the important stages in angiosperm evolution?

In answer to the third question, Professor Dilcher discovered that the most defining stage of the angiosperm's development was when the gymnosperm folded its seeds inside a leaf-like enclosure. This reduced the likelihood of inbreeding and began the process of out-crossing. Out-crossing began the game of seducing the behavior of insects and animals. It precipitated the development of the co-evolution between plants and animals.

Flowering plants did not just happen. There was a process of evolution that occurred over a period of 100 million years. The colorful petals of a flower arose from subtending modified leaves. So the first angiosperm arose from an environment that contained social insects, birds and mammals. The plants developed genetic out-cropping strategies and enclosed their seeds to lure insects who would fly away with the plant's genetic material.

PBS has published a Nova production of Professor Dilcher's, First Flower. Click HERE to learn more about his work, preview the publication and buy the DVD.

Future research into the development of plants and flowers will be significant, given that 60% of genetically modified plants are in the United States. Professor Dilcher continues his research and teaching at Indiana University.

Click HERE to view a pdf file of the Power Point slides used in this talk

Scribe: Veronica Foote

Vol 89 No 15 - April 16, 2012

The Logistics of a Traveling Rail Road Circus

Presented By: Vincent Mabert, Professor Emeritus, Kelley School of Business, Indiana University

Vincent Mabert

Vincent Mabert

A large railroad-borne American circus of 100 years ago presented up to 300 performances a year, travelling thousands of miles, transporting perhaps 700 people and 300 horses, plus exotic animals such as lions, hippos, camels and many more. It moved all those people and animals as often as 150 times a year, providing all their food and shelter, as well as erecting and taking down their performance place at each stop! They were really good at logistics, far ahead of nearly all activities going on in the same decades.

Circuses go back to the early 18th century, when they performed in theaters or large arenas. An American man named Brown was the first to perform in a large tent in 1825, the tent enabling his circus to travel. Soon after, circuses added menageries, completing the elements of the American circus, traveling the dirt roads in wagons.

Circus Train

A Hoosier named Spaulding ordered 9 custom-built railroad cars in 1856 to carry his circus. Circuses then became larger and travelled on longer and longer trains. They could skip small towns and play only cities if they chose, and were free of those dirt roads.

The schedule and itinerary of a large circus was developed at the end of the previous season, in the light of the managers' experience. The following list shows major tasks to be done and the time before a particular performance when they were done:

1. Obtain the city license and obtain contracts for food and other things to be bought locally, 4 months prior to arrival

2. Obtain rail contracts (the circus owned the cars and needed only the engines and crew from a railroad), 3 months prior to arrival

3. Post advertising all over town 3 months in advance, then 3 weeks in advance, then, 1week in advance

4. Check the show lot, contact all the contract sources of supplies, arranging for any grading, etc., check and mark the route from rail yard to show lot, fix anything not in order 1-2 days ahead

On the show day, the show would arrive in 1, 2 or 3 sections of up to 100 total cars, spaced out so a section could be unloaded before the next arrived. The work horses would be harnessed on the train, and cooking stoves would be lit while the cookhouse wagons were being unloaded. Everyone knew his jobs and the order in which to do them. The first section would arrive at or before 5 am, the boss canvas man would stake out the locations of the tents, and they would start erecting tents at 6 am. The tents had to be finished by 11, when the parade started.

Circus Train

A big circus could have a parade 2 miles long. Of course, as soon as an act had completed the parade route, it hurried back to the circus lot to start its next job. Meanwhile, the cookhouse was cooking constantly to feed people who came in whenever they had a break between jobs.

The matinee performance began at 2 pm; while it was on, tents were being dropped and things packed which would not be needed till the next stop. The evening show started at 8 pm, and by its end there was hardly anything left on the lot except the big top. By midnight the circus had left town till next year.

Click HERE to view an article on the Logistics of the American Circus: The Golden Age" by the speaker which covers much the same ground as his talk

Scribe: Joe Jones

Vol 89 No 16 - April 23, 2012

The Incredible Acrobats of Shanghai

Presented By: Dr. Gonz Chua

Gonz Chua

Dr. Gonz Chua

A short history of acrobatics in China was presented followed by a showing of a DVD of the Incredible Acrobats of Shanghai.

The acrobatic art has been existent in China for more than two thousand years. In the long course of its development, the Chinese acrobatic art has formed its own style. The ancient acrobatics stemmed from the people's life and had a close link with their life and productive labor. Instruments of labor like tridents, wicker rings and articles of daily use such as tables, chairs, jars, plates and bowls were used in their performances.

As early as the Warring States Period (475-221 BC), there appeared rudiments of acrobatics. By the time of the Han Dynasty (221 BC-220 AD), the acrobatic art or "Hundred Plays" further developed both in contents and varieties. There were superb performances with music accompaniment on the acrobatic stage about two thousand years ago.

In the Tang Dynasty, the number of acrobats greatly increased and their performing skills much improved. Progress in Chinese acrobatics was very great during the Tang Dynasty, between the 7th and 10th centuries, when performances were often held at the imperial court, a Tang mural in the Dunhuang Grottoes, titled 'An Outing by the Lady of Song" shows acrobatics, dancing, singing, and horsemanship.

At present, there are over 120 acrobatic troupes above the county level. More than 12,000 people are involved in performing. Chinese acrobatics has won acclaim and praise from audiences both at home and abroad, and Chinese acrobats have won many gold medals in World Acrobatic Festivals in recent years. Cycling With Bowl Piling, Lion Dance and Vocal imitation are the most famous programs.

A professionally produced Performance by the Incredible Acrobats of Shanghai was then presented.

Scribe: Gonz Chua

Vol 89 No 17 - April 30, 2012

Hell Revisited: A Return to Iwo Jima After 70 Years

Presented By: Scientech Member Jim Baize, Engineer Developer, Baize Engr Corp

Jim Baize

Jim Baize

Jim Baize was fifteen years old when he enlisted in the Navy. He was living in a hotel, employed by Western Union to deliver telegrams on his bicycle around Indianapolis. An Army sergeant facilitated Jim's under age enlistment by claiming to be his father and affirming he was seventeen. Jim was trained at Camp Pendleton to drive amphibious landing craft. He delivered Marines in the invasions of Saipan, Tinian and Guam by age sixteen without a scratch. Then came Iwo Jima.

The island was in sight on February 18, 1945. The following evening Jim and his crew received orders for the landing and preparations were made. Thirty eight Marines and four crew members boarded the Higgins Boat (LCVP) by cargo net. The craft was plywood with a steel ramp for exit on the beach.

The boat took a direct hit as it neared the beach. The three other crew members were killed and Jim was wounded. He was given morphine and helped onto shore by a comrade. Jim equipped himself with armament and gear from a fallen Marine and joined the assault force of Marines.


Jim and Pillbox

Our forces faced 1421 pill boxes equipped with machine guns. Through the first wave of landings on the beach the Japanese defenders were quiet. But when the second wave landed the Japanese opened up with fierce and withering fire. The Americans were easy targets, stuck on the beach. The sand was so loose and deep it was impossible to dig protective holes. Vehicles were stuck; it was difficult to walk or run in the black sand.

The U.S. forces were in hell. Death was all around them and there was no place to hide. However, their training and motivation carried them forward. To stay on the beach was to die. They cleared one pill box after another with flame throwers and grenades. Shockingly, more defenders appeared after the Marines wiped out the machine gun crews. It was discovered that there was a tunnel system connecting pill boxes all across the island.

Taking Iwo Jima was deemed necessary because it was on the flight path to Tokyo. Fighters attacked U.S. bombers whenever a bombing raid was attempted. The invasion was expected to succeed in 72 hours. Instead, it took 36 days before the island was completely pacified. Tens of thousands of bombs were dropped and ordinance fired from battle ships to start the invasion - 22,000 Japanese were dug in so deep and well that they were largely unaffected by the shelling - 70,000 U.S. troops made up the assault force. Over 8,000 were killed and over 6,000 wounded. Of the 22,000 defenders, only 800 survived. Jim witnessed the flag raising on Mt. Suribachi. It took a week of fighting to conquer Suribachi.


Veterans and Escorts

On March 10, 2012 Jim returned to Guam, Saipan and Iwo Jima as one of twelve survivors for the 67th anniversary. There are approximately 100 surviving vets of Iwo Jima. Only 12 were able to obtain the medical releases necessary to qualify for the anniversary tour sponsored by The Greatest Generation Foundation. Students from Ohio State University were paired with the vets for the tour to learn the history of the Pacific Theater in WWII and leadership skills.

The twelve vets were treated like celebrity heroes at their welcomes in Los Angeles, Oahu and Guam. Delegations from the service branches, veterans and government officials met and attended the surviving veterans. On Iwo Jima they were met by Marines from Okinawa and a delegation from the Japanese Parliament. There were no Japanese survivors of Iwo Jima to meet the U.S. survivors.

Iwo Jima was returned to Japan after the end of World War II. The Japanese flag flies atop Mt. Suribachi. Iwo Jima is uninhabited. There is nothing there except an air strip and monuments.

Click HERE to view a 9-minute video of the Iwo Jima invasion

or click HERE to view a Greatest Generation Foundation video of still photos from the revisit to Iwo Jima, which were shown during the presentation (both courtesy of Charles Shoup)

Scribe: Jeff Rasley

Vol 89 No 18 - May 7, 2012

Purdue Solar Decathlon Home

Presented By: William Hutzel, Professor of Mechanical Engineering Technology, Purdue University

William Hutzel

William Hutzel

Prof. Hutzel received his undergraduate and graduate training at Pennsylvania State University with degrees in mechanical engineering.

The Solar Decathlon is a competition sponsored by the United States Department of Energy to construct a next-generation house. The competition is held every two years, the last one being in 2011 in Washington, DC. There were 20 teams from universities all over the world with the contest held on the National Mall. More than 200 Purdue students participated with help from many Purdue departments. Their entry was one vision for future residential housing that is efficient, practical and essential. It had an energy efficient design that integrates high levels of insulation, natural ventilation, day lighting and energy efficient appliances. This was accomplished without sacrificing comfort or amenities and also meeting cost expectations of a typical Midwestern consumer.

Buildings waste energy: 40% of energy use is in buildings (1/2 in homes), 28% in transportation and 32% in industry. Electricity cost in Indiana is about 6.2 cents per kilowatt hour while in Connecticut the cost is 18.06 cents. Unfortunately for those of us living in Indiana this is going to soon change. The guiding principles for the competition are net-zero energy use, functionality, affordability and a design suitable for midwestern living.

For the energy analysis the goal is to optimize the building envelope, maximize efficiency inside the home and add solar panels to reach net-zero. Structurally insulated panels were used with 4" walls (R24), 8"roofs (R50) and an "airtight" environment. The passive features considered were home orientation relative to the sun positions, shading from overhangs, day lighting and high performance windows. The house was to be less than 1000 ft.² and be able to be moved to Washington, DC for the competition. Being an Indiana home a garage was added. Energy Star rated appliances were used as was a heat pump water heater, the latter being somewhat more expensive but more energy efficient than a standard electric heater.

Solar House

Purdue Solar House

One of the most important components of the home is the photovoltaic solar array (PV). It has a 9kw PV array featuring 36 240W roof panels that allow the home to become a net-zero energy home. All excess electricity is sold back to the power company. Power is drawn from the grid "when the sun don't shine." This array provides enough electricity to give the homeowner all of the modern-day comforts while remaining at net-zero electrically. A Bio-Wall was introduced by the Purdue students composed of living plants that serve as a natural air filter (patent pending). As the house was being built each section was carefully checked for energy efficiency etc. The house was divided into three sections for transporting to Washington. This was done by very skilled transporters who knew how to cope with the variation in state highway transportation rules.

The juried contests were based on architecture, engineering, home entertainment, communications and market appeal. The measured contests included energy balance, affordability, comfort, hot water and appliances. Purdue received a second-place finish award and it was their entry chosen for the cover of the Architect Magazine. The home has a value of $250,000 and has been sold to an owner/occupant in an established Lafayette neighborhood.

Click HERE to view the Power Point slides used in this talk.

Click HERE to view the web site for the Purdue Solar Home project with further information on the house.

Scribe: Gerald Kurlander

Vol 89 No 19 - May 14, 2012

Tour of The Nature Conservatory, Efroymson Conservation Center

TNC Building

The Nature Conservancy

The Nature Conservancy (NC), founded in 1951, is a private, non-political organization dedicated to the preservation of natural habitat. It exists in all 50 states and in over 30 foreign countries; there are over one million members. They endeavor to pursue non-confrontational, pragmatic solutions to conservation challenges. It is the largest non-profit conservation group in the U.S.

Although some funds originate from government grants, the vast majority is raised from private donors. NC can purchase land or receive property from concerned citizens. It works together with the Indiana State Parks Department to preserve various lands.

They have hundreds of staff scientists in the country. The NC advises them regarding the management of parcels of land. The Indiana chapter began in 1960 in Bloomington and it has over 65 staff, of which one-half are in the field. They perform plantings, burnings and seed collection.

The HQ building is worth a tour, especially on a sunny day. Actually that is a must. It gives the tourist a great perspective on how sunlight is captured. The building received a LEED (Leadership in Ecology and Engineering Design) Platinum rating. The LEED certification program defines what a "green" building is by establishing common standards in sustainable site development, water efficiency, energy efficiency, material selection, indoor environmental quality and innovation/design process.

Green buildings exist because they lower energy use, water consumption and CO2 emissions. The building in Indianapolis is designated "Platinum," the highest rating based on accumulated points in building standards.

CEO Adam McLane led the tour of this beautiful facility. He pointed out the recycled materials in the form of brick and timbers in the HC. The one-acre site can absorb water and recycle it for use in landscape watering and in water for toilets.

The site is not connected to the city's storm sewer system. This saves Indianapolis $6,000 yearly. The soil is sandy so as to absorb rainfall. The water drains off the parking lot and is collected. Thirty eight geothermal wells have been sunk 300 feet below the surface. Six inch PVC pipes form a gridlock and since the water is underground, it maintains 56° F year round. This system is the basis for the building's geothermal heating and cooling.

Energy use is decreased by 35% and water usage is 40% less. Landscape areas contain native plants, grasses and trees. There are many Indiana hardwoods in the building, with the lobby containing many varieties: maple, oak, shagbark hickory and yellow poplar. Limestone from the Hoosier State can be seen in the lobby. The ceiling over the reception area is 24 feet high, with large south-facing windows. Heating vents are positioned around the floor, with the ductwork 18 inches below the floor. Voice and data cables are all under the floor.

A unique lighting system is occupancy sensored and daylight sensored. The boardroom in the basement has a north end nine-foot window, which faces a wall of cement blocks and plants. Rain water is captured by the wall and the cement floor with its drains.

The Efroymson Conservation Center at The Nature Conservancy is a marvel of engineering and design - a truly remarkable green building!

Scribe: Bill Dick

Vol 89 No 20 - May 21, 2012

Current Treatment of Macular Degeneration, Including Macular Membrane Surgery

Presented By: Dr. Rodney S. Bucher, Associated Vitreoretinal and Uveitis Consultants

Rodney Bucher

Dr. Rodney Bucher

Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of vision loss in the western world, and is age related occurring by and large after the age of 55. It currently affects 1.4 million people in the U.S. The AMD process involves a disruption of the pigmented layer at the back of the retina, probably on the basis of disruption of the vascular system which nourishes this important structure. The disease process is focused on the fovea centralis, the small pit at the center of the retina which contains the cones and is responsible for central visual acuity and color vision. The periphery of the retina is much less affected.

Eye Structure

Eye Structure

The development of the disease is affected strongly by genetics. If you have close relatives with this disease, you are much more likely to develop the process and would be one of 8 million people who would be considered at high risk. Other confounding factors include smoking, hypertension, Caucasian race, UV exposure, diet, hypertension, and female gender.

There are two kinds of AMD, wet and dry. The dry form is the basic process underlying the disease, namely accelerated aging of the Retinal Pigment Epithelium (RPE) and is resistant to our current methods of treatment. The wet form refers to the proliferation of small blood vessels in the area affected by the disease. It is stimulated by breaks in Bruch's membrane. There is then the production of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) which stimulates the growth of the small blood vessels characteristic of the wet form. This protein offers ophthalmologists the chance to affect the course of the disease by blocking the action of VEGF.

Over the years, these vessels have been attacked with lasers (hot and cold), steroid injections, and other drugs which suppress VEGF and neovascularity.

One of the major treatments is with Avastin, an antibody to VEGF. It was used as a cancer therapy initially, and was noted to have an effect on AMD. Initially it was given intravenously and off label for this disease. It was however noted that there were severe cardiovascular side effects, and so it was given at a much lower dose as an injection directly into the vitreous of the eye. For the first time visual improvement was noted in these patients. The cost of Avastin is $50 per shot but it is an off label use. Lucenta is approved for this use but is $2000 per shot. The effectiveness of both is equal. The newer drug Eylea is similar but no comparison to the older 2 drugs was discussed.

One very good point is that there is evidence that cataract surgery can cause rapid progression of macular degeneration. For this reason, it would be well to have a fluorescein angiogram and a retinal specialist consultation prior to surgery in patients at risk.

Several things can be done to delay the onset of macular degeneration. These include, nutritional steps such as eating green leafy vegetables, antioxidant vitamin supplements including lutein, copper, and zinc daily (smokers should avoid vitamin A therapy due to increase the growth of certain lung cancers), smoking cessation (2nd hand smoke can be a problem as well), and early identification of problems developing in eyes at risk (in particular the opposite eye in a patient with wet AMD).

Eye Injection

Eye Injection

The speaker also showed us highly interesting videos of retinal surgery cases which caused a high cringe effect in the audience. These all seemed to need removal of the vitreous material from the eye which was replaced with another material, and then filled with a gas. The first video was of a retinal detachment which was decompressed followed by laser repair of the tear. The second case showed the removal of some scar tissue from the retina. In this case, the scar was first stained with a blue dye. The tissue was then removed from the retina using very delicate forceps.

Click HERE to view the Power Point slides used in this talk.

Scribe: Jim Bettner

Vol 89 No 21 - June 4, 2012

The Great Stink of London - An Engineering and Medical Tale

Presented By:William H. Dick, MD, Scientech Club Historian

Bill Dick

Dr. Bill Dick

Of the seven great epidemics in world history, cholera is the only one that is water-born. Smallpox was ended by vaccination; it existed from 430 BC to 1979. It was an air-born virus that carried an extremely high death rate. Spanish Flu is another air-born virus which existed from 1918-1919. There was no treatment.

The Plague or Black Death was first seen in 1340 and it lasted to 1771. Plague traversed from Asia to Europe in 1340, killing up to one-third or more of the population. Plague is due to Yersinia pestis, a bacterium that is contained in the rat flea. The bacterium is spread to humans by the bite of the fleas. It can now be treated with doxycycline or other antibiotics. Malaria (Bad Air) has existed from 1600 to the present. The parasite Plasmodium infects humans after the bite of a female Anopheles mosquito. The entry into red blood cells can cause anemia, kidney failure and liver failure. It can be prevented by Chloroquine and can be treated with quinine and doxycycline.

AIDS or Human Immunodeficiency virus is spread by contact with body fluids. It can be treated with antiviral medicines. Typhus is a bacterial disease (Rickettsia) that is spread by body lice. It killed 3 million people from 1918-1922. Finally, cholera has existed from 1817 to the present. The Vibrio bacterium exists in water and can be found on food exposed to that water. There have been eight pandemics; it is the first truly global disease. Cholera produces toxins that cause severe diarrhea and dehydration.

In the early 1800's in the U.S., Philadelphia had a problem with yellow fever (virus) and New York City was a cholera site. Both cities cleared up their problems with the delivery of fresh water. London lost thousands of people to four large cholera outbreaks from 1831-1872. From Roman times, surface water was drained to the Thames and drinking water was obtained from wells. In the 1820's the introduction of water closets added to the problem.

Dr. William O'Shaughnessy proposed the use of IV fluids in 1831. In 1832, Dr. Thomas Latta treated many patients with IV's, saving the lives of one-third of his patients. Dr. John Snow wrote a paper in 1849 arguing for a water-born cause for Cholera. He persuaded the authorities to remove the Broad Street pump handle, thus ending the epidemic in that area of London.

Many government bills were proposed to fix the problem but an agreement could not be reached until 1858, the year of the Great Stink and the hottest summer on record. Eventually a bill passed in the House (led by Benjamin Disraeli) authorizing money to be spent for new sewer construction. The sewage gathered near the House of Parliament by the Thames and the lawmakers had to leave that building because of the stench. Joseph Bazalgette was named the Chief Engineer. On the sewer project, 318 million bricks were used; 3.5 million yards of earth were moved; 52 acres of land were reclaimed; and 3.5 miles of riverfront were reclaimed. Three new embankments were made and three new gardens formed. Four new bridges and eight new streets were built. Sewage was carried by underground pipes for long distances north and south of the Thames. No further cases of cholera would be seen in London after 1866.

The germ theory as a cause for infectious disease was very slow in coming. With the invention of the microscope in 1673, organisms were seen on the slide, but no connection to disease was made. Ignatz Semmelweiss, John Snow, Joseph Lister, Louis Pasteur and Robert Koch all contributed to medical knowledge. Koch's postulates for infectious disease in 1890 finally provided a scientific basis for many diseases, including Cholera and TB.

Other fields of human endeavor were centuries ahead of medicine with their accomplishments. Architecture, engineering, sculpture, astronomy, philosophy, law, and navigation were well established years ago, long before scientific medicine. There was some medicine, and especially surgery, found in Egyptian, Greek and Roman eras but it cannot compare to the medicine of today.

In the 120 years since Koch's postulates, there have been remarkable advances in medicine: blood banking and IV therapy, antibiotics, cortisone, peripheral vascular surgery, discovery of DNA, prevention of polio were present by 1960. Further advances included the decline of TB and syphilis, decrease in infant mortality, kidney dialysis, organ transplantation, cardiac care units, ER's, heart bypass surgery and joint replacement, which were all present by 1975. Since then Shock Wave Lithotrypsy for kidney stones has been perfected along with percutaneous surgery of the kidney, gall bladder and other sites. Heart disease has decreased due to cholesterol therapy, smoking cessation and aerobic exercise. Cancer mortality has improved and lastly, we are in the midst of an amazing increase in human longevity.

Click HERE to view the Power Point slides used in this talk.

Scribe: Bill Dick

Vol 89 No 22 - June 11, 2012

Analysis of Haitian and Japanese Earthquakes

Presented By:Dr. Andrew Freed, Assoc Professor of Geophysics, Purdue University

Andrew Freed

Prof Andrew Freed

A Tale of Two Earthquakes

Our presenter today was Dr Andy Freed, Associate Professor of Geophysics, Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences. Andy earned his BSME from Cornell, MS from Utah State, and PhD from the Univ of Arizona.

Andy explained the nature of different types of earthquakes and how tsunamis are formed. He focused on the 2010 M7.0 quake in Haiti and the 2011 quake and tsunami in Japan.

The M7 quake in Haiti created disproportionate destruction because Port Au Prince lies right on a fault, the population is dense, and the concrete buildings were especially susceptible to earthquake damage.

Andy's team has been going to Haiti for 7 years assessing risk and, in fact, had forecast in 2008 that a M7.5 earthquake was likely. They arrived a week after the quake to find the people surprisingly hopefully despite 220K deaths and 1.5M homeless. 250K houses, 30K commercial buildings, 500 schools, and 100 churches were destroyed. Ironically, the tin shacks survived, while the concrete homes collapsed. The $8B estimated damage was 120% of Haiti's GDP.

Earthquakes occur at the boundaries of the tectonic plates. The plates can move laterally (Haiti), thrust/subduction (Japan), or compression/extension. With modern GPS technology, the annual movement of the earth's crust can be measured which is what Andy's team did in Haiti. The movement is only mm/yr (velocity) and the total movement is the "slip deficit". As the slip deficit increases the tension builds until the fault "elastically rebounds" to relieve the tension. The slip deficit is largest near the fault (the Where). The size of the slip deficit and time since the last quake are used to forecast the Magnitude of the next quake.

The Tohoku M9 Japan earthquake was a surprise, but shouldn't have been. Japan lies at the junction of four plates and has a continual history of strong quakes. Most were M7 max in other parts of Japan so the thinking was there was less risk in northern Japan without a major quake in 1300 yrs, but it turned out the longer delay just led to a stronger quake. 20K died, only 10% of Haiti's toll, despite it being 100 times stronger. Japan is better prepared and the quake was off shore.

This was a subduction quake. The Pacific plate is going under the North American plate off the coast of northern Japan. When the N Am plate "elastically" rebounded, it thrust upward as much as 50 meters up from the sea floor for 50Km along the fault. This was greater than 2 times the largest slip ever recorded, but half the slip area compared to similar M9 quakes. The upward thrust lifted the sea causing the huge tsunami. The peak tsunami wave at Fukushima was 10 m (site of the nuclear plant), but sea walls and elevated zones were built for only 5 m. The tsunami is not like a wave, but more like a tide and lasts 15 -20 minutes with additional peaks and troughs within this "tide".

Four signs of impending tsunami danger:

- Significant seismic shaking near shore; 20-40 min to get to high ground

- Tide appears to go out far and fast; 5-10 min to run faster to high ground

- Very large wave/white water coming in: seconds to get to a high floor in a strong building

- 2nd/3rd wave are often larger.

Professor Freed gave a very interesting insight into earthquakes, tsunamis, and the science involved.

Follow-up questions:

-New Madrid fault is a "rift" in the middle of the N Am plate, shows no "slip deficit", and is not well understood.

-Major San Andreas quake was an M8.2 in 1852 (not the 1906 SF quake). Cycle is 150 yrs which is now!!

-Istanbul, Turkey is another populated area at high risk.

-Fracking for natural gas might cause minor M2-3 quakes.

Scribe: John Peer

Vol 89 No 23 - June 18, 2012

732 AD, Charles Martel and the Battle of Tours

Presented By:William H. Dick, MD, Scientech Club Historian

Bill Dick

Dr. Bill Dick

732 AD, along with 1066 and 1776, is one of the key dates in history that sticks in the mind of the student. It did in mine. We were taught in high school that Charles Martel defeated the Moors in France at the Battle of Tours in 732 AD. So just what was the Battle of Tours and where did it occur?

Tours is located in France and on the north and south sides of the Loire River, the longest river in France. Also, the Loire connects to the Atlantic Ocean, at its western end. Tours is an old Celtic town which became an important river crossing to the Romans. One of the five largest amphitheaters in the Roman Empire was located there. It lies just 125 miles south of Paris. Tours was the site of the Abbey of St. Martin of Tours. It was one of the most wealthy and prestigious abbeys in Europe.

The actual battle site is unknown, but it was fought somewhere between Poitiers and Tours, in France. Poitiers lies just north of Bordeaux and the province of Aquitaine; it was the seat of the Dukes of Aquitaine. Eleanor of Aquitaine lived at the Palace of Poitiers in the late 1100's. Poitiers has many Roman ruins and it is the site of the oldest church in France, the Baptistère Saint-Jean, built in the 4th century.

The battle was fought between the Muslim armies under Abdul Rahman and the troops of the Franks under the command of Charles Martel, "the Hammer." For the past 100 years, the Muslims had suffered only one minor defeat. They had swept out of the Arabian Peninsula to conquer Iraq, Iran, Syria, Palestine, Egypt and all of North Africa. In 711 AD, they entered Spain and conquered the Visigoth army. They controlled all of Spain, the south of France and Aquitiane. The Muslims took control of Bordeaux and reached Autun in Burgundy. Then they traveled further into France.

Charles Martel was ready for them. He was allied with the people from Bordeaux and those from Burgundy. He was the leader of the Franks, who controlled northern and central France, the western part of Germany and the Low Countries. The Franks began to convert to Christianity as early as 300 AD.

In 496 AD, with the baptism of Clovis I, the first king of the Franks, France was its way toward becoming a Christian nation. The Franks knew the territory between Poitiers and Tours and they laid a trap for the Muslims. The high ground was occupied and a defensive phalanx-like formation lined up. The six-day battle was ferocious but the Franks gained the upper hand. Muslim treasure and supply trains were raided and in the confusion Abdul Rahman was killed. The Muslims retreated during the night leaving the Franks as victors.

Charles Martel had further battles with the Muslims in 736 AD in Provence, Avignon, Arles and Aix-en-Provence. The following year saw another defeat for the Umayyad army near Narbonne on the south coast of France. Lastly, the Franks prevailed at Marseilles in 739 AD, ending the Caliphate in France.

Charlemagne, the grandson of Charles Martel, was crowned Holy Roman Emperor in 800 AD by Pope Leo III at St. Peter's in Rome. His grandsons split the empire into three parts: Lothair had Alsace, Burgundy, Provence, Italy and the Low Countries, Louis occupied the lands east of the Rhine and to the north and east of Italy, Charles the Bald controlled the western portion, later to become France. The empire waned by 1600 and it ended in 1812. It was essentially a group of German territories, led by an emperor and various princes.

How important was the Battle of Tours in world history? Most historians, including Edward Gibbon, H.G. Wells, Will Durant and Michael Graves believe that it changed the course of western history. It kept Europe safe for Christianity with its monasteries and the guiding hand of the Church. Laws, architecture, learning and the rights of women would have all been different under the Muslims. Eastern historians disagree.

Europe was safe from the Muslims for another 700 years until the Turks defeated Constantinople in 1453, after Charles Martel, "the Hammer," won the famous battle in Tours in 732 AD.

Click HERE to view the Power Point slides used in this talk.

Scribe: Bill Dick

Vol 89 No 24 - June 25, 2012

Your Knowledge Captured: The New Publishing Technology and How to Make it Work

Presented By:Alicia Rasley

Alicia Rasley

Alicia Rasley

Today's program "A REVOLUTION IN PUBLISHING was presented by Alicia Rasley. Alicia is a writer and English Professor. She attended the University of Chicago, and Butler University where she obtained her MS. She has also obtained a MS of fine Arts from the University of Maryland. She currently teaches at IVY Tech. Alicia is the wife of Jeff Rasley a Scientech Member.

She has published 10 books by Digital Way, and Midsummer Books.

In just the past few years a revolution in publishing has occurred. This has happened as the world has moved from the printed book for over 600 years to the new way to read - the e-reader.

Amazon and others has made this happen by the introduction of the Kindle and other electronic readers. Other book sellers have followed suit.

So what just did happen before our eyes in the world of publishing? Just a few years ago the author would write a book, get an agent, get an editor, find an artist to create the cover, and find a printer who sent the book to a distributor who then sent it to a book store where the reader buys the book. This adds to the cost of a book with printing, shipping and overhead taking 30%. The distributor and bookseller would then add on another 55%. Lastly the publisher would get 8% and the author would end up with 7% of which the agent would take 15%.

As you can see, getting your book into the hands of readers takes time and is very expensive. Of course the process does not start until you find an agent who believes that your book will sell, and it will pass all of the reviews in the process of printing the book.

Alicia reviewed one of the very few authors who hit the jack pot using this method. J. K. Rowling sent her book "Harry Potter" to 12 publishers before she found one that felt that it was a good book. What would happen if she gave up on the 11th turn down? Yet she did find the right publisher and is now a billionaire. Her story is extremely rare, yet today in e-publishing many authors are now making extremely high incomes because all of the middlemen have been eliminated.

NOW IS THE TIME TO PUBLISH YOUR BOOK! By using Amazon and others you can get your book published in electronic format within days, and have your book in front of 2 billion people who read the English language using the Internet. Direct from the author to the reader. Amazon has an algorithm that helps you get in front of the readers interested in reading your book. Amazon takes 33% and you get the remainder!

What about those who want to read from paper? The "Book Expresso" machine will take your PDF file and turn it into a book in just minutes. So this machine allows your readers to have a real printed book on the shelf but without having any hard covers. Print as needed.

Could you be an author? Are you an expert on something? Have you had excitement in your life? Do you have a story dying to be told? Now is the time to turn those ideas into words. You can hire an editor if you feel you need one, and then present your book to Amazon and get it in front of those who would enjoy hearing your story.

Alicia would be happy to help any Scientech Member tell their story.

Click HERE to view the Power Point slides used in this talk.

Scribe: Hank Wolfla