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Vol 89 No 25 - July 9, 2012

Discovering the Science of the Environment

Presented By: Brooke Furge, Education Specialist, IUPUI's Center for Earth and Environmental Science

Brooke Furge

Brooke Furge

Today's speaker, Brooke Furge, first described the mission of the Center for Earth and Environmental Science and the four major ongoing research projects. She then followed this part of the talk with the description of the selection process of students for the field trip to Lake Michigan as sponsored by the D. J. Angus Foundation and the field trip activities.

The center , CEES, is a research and outreach center bridging environmental research to community education and problem solving. The mission is to provide interdisciplinary research solutions to translate research into action while promoting environmental stewardship through education and public service programs.

Four major research initiatives are:

a. Eagle Creek Watershed Monitoring Program (2007-2012)

b. Aquisafe I and II (2007-2012)

c. Algal Toxicity Project (2008-2012)

d. State of Indiana Fluvial Erosion Hazard Mitigation Program (2011- 2012)

The Eagle Creek program assessed watershed processes to evaluate water quality. The Aquisafe project is developing best management practices to intercept nutrients and pesticides. The Algal project tries to understand algal populations, toxins, and bloom triggers in local drinking water resources. The Fluvial Erosion project tries to create resources and strategies to better recognize and avoid FEH-related risks,

The Eagle Creek study took samples of water to measure its contamination, its distribution, transport and flow pathways. It screened for contaminants of emerging concern as well. It found agricultural chemicals, nitrates, pharmaceutical compounds and E Coli.

The Aquisafe project, together with German and French scientists, studied the removal efficiency of nitrate and pesticide removal techniques in a constructed wetland. It focuses on treatment of water runoff.

The Algal project studied the types, locations, metabolites, and nutrients of central Indiana reservoirs.

The Fluvial Erosion Hazard Project studies the results of floods, bridge and road damage and resultant water contamination. The results will be shared with the local community.

The second part of presentation consisted of processes of recruitment and student and faculty selection for the Annual DJ Angus-Scientech Foundation Student Boat Trip . She discussed the recruitment strategy, application process and gave examples of student write up in their application forms. In 2012, 27 students and 3 teachers were selected for the trip.

The trip to Lake Michigan was a success and she looked forward to the next Scientech sponsored trip in 2013.

Note: Copies of the slides used in this talk have not been included at the request of the speaker.

Scribe: Gonz Chua

Vol 89 No 26 - July 16, 2012

Hydroelectric Project in Basa Village, Nepal

Presented By: Jeff Rasley and Mike Miller

Rasley Miller

Jeff Rasley and Mike Miller

Member, Jeff Rasley, has been hiking and visiting Basa Village for years. During his visits, he has met and became friends with Niru of the Rai people. Niru helped Jeff organize his trips and tours of Nepal. And what started off as a simple request for Jeff to help Niru with a school for their children in the village, became the establishment of two separate foundations, the Basa Village Foundation Nepal and the Basa Village Foundation USA. Not only has Jeff helped Niru provide a school to the village children that educates them through the fifth grade, but also recently provided the village with electricity for the first time.

Jeff called on today's guest speaker, Mr. Mike Miller, to engineer the hydroelectric project in Basa Village. Mr. Miller graduated from Purdue University in 1960 and subsequently spent the next 27 years at RCA. Since 1990, he has co-founded two different medical device companies, and after selling the last one in 2006, he retired.

We are thankful to both Mr. Rasley and Mr. Miller for dedicating their time and resources to raising the money needed for the electrical equipment that the villagers spent four days carrying on their backs. The villagers provided all of the labor needed to put the equipment in place and build the power station around it. Mr. Miller showed us a beautiful slideshow and video of Basa Village and the Rai people. All of the villagers contributed in some way to the electrification project by carrying equipment, damming water, and building the power station and distribution system. The two alternators together are capable of producing a total of 5,000 Watts, however the villagers generate only 2,500 Watts at a time, which is enough to power one outlet in 60+ buildings. Each home received 3 light bulbs and one outlet. The villagers no longer have to build fires in their fire pits in the center of their homes, producing so much smoke that their ceilings are black. They now have electrical lights and are able to install smokeless stoves. Although the fire pits had potential religious connotations, and certainly cultural connotations with the fire pits "three stones" possessing hierarchy meaning within the families, Mr. Rasley and Mr. Miller were very sensitive to not infringe or attempt to change their cultural beliefs in any way.

Currently, work is continuing in the village with the focus on providing clean water technology. For more information on Mr. Rasley's work and time in Nepal, consider purchasing his book, "Bringing Progress to Paradise: What I Got from Giving to a Mountain Village in Nepal". Visit

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

Scribe: Veronica Foote

Vol 89 No 27 - July 23, 2012

Full Steam Ahead: Reflections on the Impact of the First Steamboat on the Ohio River: 1811-2011+

Presented By: Rita Kohn

Rita Kohn

Rita Kohn

Ms. Kohn is an acclaimed story teller and the author of 20 books, including True Brew: a Guide to Craft Beer in Indiana (Indiana University Press, 2010) and Full Steam Ahead, on the Impact of the First Steamboat on the Ohio River (Indiana University Press 2011). Today we had the pleasure of hearing one of her many stories.

She has also written 25 plays, one of which "Following Lydia" will be presented this year at the Indiana State Fair Pioneer Village. Rita, as the editor of Full Steam Ahead, provided the club a summary of those first years of steamboats on the Ohio River and the role of engineers changing the economy, culture and folk life of the Midwest.

Rita started her talk telling the audience that the year of 1811 had many major events including the New Madrid Earthquake, the Great Comet which was as bright as the moon and the first steam boat on the Ohio River. Along with these great events, Nicholas Roosevelt (great uncle of President Theodore Roosevelt) built the steamboat New Orleans in Pittsburgh in 1810 and 1811, in association with Robert Fulton. Nicholas and his new wife Lydia Latrobe spent their honeymoon steaming down the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers to New Orleans in 1811 and 1812. Lydia was an adventurous soul, showing her pregnant state in public while on the boat. Lydia was the daughter of Henry Latrobe, architect of the nation's capital building.

Nicholas was in partnership with Fulton, using the steamboat on the Hudson River to provide European trade goods up-river. Their intent was to open the Ohio and Mississippi rivers as major trade routes to the Gulf of Mexico. A major challenge was the depth of the river, so in 1808 Fadok Crameos provided a navigational guide to the river. Not content with the work of Fadok, Nicholas, and Lydia in 1809 undertook their own depth soundings and charted an efficient route. Likewise, they made special note of locations for wood and coal needed for their steamboat.

The inventive work of these steam boats led to the railroad steam engine and manufacturing enterprises. The mystique of steam boat elegance led to some wonderful entertainment such as the 1951 film "Showboat." This movie, based upon Edna Ferber's 1926 novel, chronicles 3 generations touching the issues resulting from invention and innovation. The year 2011 marked the 200th anniversary of the first steam boat on the Ohio River bordering Indiana.

Lastly, Rita reviewed each section of the book, creating a need to pick up a copy on the next trip to the Historical Society.

Note: Copies of the slides used in this talk have not been included at the request of the speaker.

Scribe: Hank Wolfla

Vol 89 No 28 - July 30, 2012

The LHC for Dummies aka A Child's Guide to Particle Physics

Presented By: Bill Stanley, Scientech Member

Bill Stanley

Bill Stanley

Bill Stanley received a degree in ChE from Cornell. He is an Emeritus Member of Scientech Club and past webmaster.

First, it was believed that matter was Earth, Water, Air and Fire. Later, everything was composed of atoms. The electron was the first fundamental particle that was discovered. The atomic nucleus was discovered by Rutherford in 1911.

Atomic Nucleus

Atomic Nucleus

By 1931, the nucleus of an atom was found to be composed of protons and neutrons. We now know that they are composed of quarks. Up quarks have a +2/3 charge and down quarks have a -1/3 charge. A 0 charge neutron has two down quarks and one up quark. A proton has two up quarks and one down quark, resulting in a +1 charge.

Holding things together are 4 forces. Gravity is the weakest. The weak force is responsible for radioactive decay. The electromagnetic force holds the electrons in their orbits around the nucleus. The strong force holds the nucleus of an atom together.

The Standard Particle Model divides particles into two main groups: fermions that are associated with mass and bosons that mediate or transfer force.

Standard Model

Standard Model

There are 24 fermions, 6 quarks and 6 leptons, each with an anti-particle having the opposite charge. Quarks are the only elementary particles that experience all 4 fundamental forces. Unlike quarks, leptons are not affected by the strong force.

Bosons are the particles that transfer force. Four types have been observed experimentally: photons transfer the electromagnetic field; W and Z bosons mediate the weak force; gluons transfer the strong force. Gravitons, transferring the force of gravity, have not been observed.

The Higgs Boson is responsible for mass and had not been observed. Some particles have a lot of mass, others little mass. Peter Higgs proposed that the differences in mass were due to the interaction of the particles with a force field of the Higgs boson.

To find the Higgs Boson, particles must be accelerated to very high speeds and forced to collide. Rutherford shot alpha particles (helium nuclei) at a gold foil. Later, cyclotrons and synchrotrons were developed, along with the Stanford Linear accelerator.

The Large Hadron Collider was built by CERN, an international agency. It lies in a circular tunnel 17 miles in circumference under Switzerland and France. The collider tunnel contains two beam lines containing proton beams that travel in opposite directions around the ring. The super magnets driving the particles are cooled to 1.9° K above absolute zero.

Recently, the observation of particles resulting from decay of a particle created by collision in the LHC appeared to show the decay of a Higgs Boson, the particle that gives mass. This is a major discovery supporting the Standard Particle Model.

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

Click HERE to see an excellent video describing the complete path of the proton streams through the LHC.

Images and Bibliography: There are very many images and books available on particle physics and accelerators. Use Particle Physics or Large Hadron Collider or something more specific to find images in Google Images. Here are a few of the books which I found interesting. They are all available from the Indianapolis Marion County Library:

Knocking on Heaven's Door - Lisa Randall;

Present at the Creation, The Story of CERN and the Large Hadron Collider - Amir D. Aczel

The God Particle, If the Universe is the Answer, What is the Question - L. M. Lederman

From Quarks to the Cosmos - Leon M. Lederman

Scribe: Malcolm Mallette

Vol 89 No 29 - August 6, 2012

Balancing the National Budget

Presented By: Kevin Mumford

Kevin Mumford

Kevin Mumford

Kevin Mumford is an assistant professor of economics at Purdue. He defined GDP as the value of everything made in a country within one year. The 2012 GDP of the U.S. is approximately $15 trillion. Federal debt is the sum of all the years of deficit spending.

Federal spending and federal revenue were each around 20% of GDP for the twenty years prior to 2009. Revenue has dropped to 15% and spending has climbed to 25%. For the brief period of 1999-2000, revenue exceeded debt.

Running a slight deficit does not bother economists. As the federal government does not plan to retire, it need not save and then live off its savings. It expects to last and tax forever.

Small deficits are useful, because the government finances deficit spending with the sale of bonds. Government bonds provide support for the market and a relatively safe investment. Economists do worry when the ratio of debt to GDP is increasing.

The reasons federal debt has grown since 2001 are:

1. The dot com bust caused tax revenues to fall.

2. The Bush tax cuts reduced revenue.

3. Defense spending has exceeded the budgeted amounts.

4. Medicare Part D has exceeded associated revenue and is increasing each year.

5. "Other spending," i.e., new programs without associated revenue, have been passed by Congress.

6. The Great Recession has reduced revenue.

7. The Recovery Act, TARP, and bailouts, intended to fight the recession have far exceeded revenue.

8. The amount (not rate) of interest owed on debt has increased.

The relative increase in debt is attributed to: 31% due to loss of revenue from recession, 29% to the Bush tax cuts, 20% to new spending, 17% to excess defense spending, and 3% to bailouts and TARP.

The reasons it is better to have low debt than high debt are that low debt yields a higher level of investment and exports, higher wages, higher GDP and growth, although lower return on capital.

The CBO predicts that debt will begin to decline in 2014. However, that assumes facts which are not yet in evidence. The projection of debt is 75% of GDP by 2014. Assuming revenue/spending continue on current track, debt will equal 100% of GDP by 2019.

The federal revenue stream has changed little since 2001. However, rates have been reduced, except for corporate income tax - it has increased. Spending has increased significantly. The interest rate paid on debt has declined, because the interest paid on bonds is so low.

The proposals to reduce the debt are:

1. Ignore it, letting the market and rise in employment solve any problem.

1. (a) The government should get out of paying for medical care, and deficit spending will end.

2. Constrain spending, i.e., no new unfunded programs.

3. Create a VAT (value added tax). This is the solution favored by economists.

4. Flat tax. This alone changes nothing other than simplifying tax accounting. To solve the problem, revenue would have to increase.

Obviously, the solution will come only through political will to address the problem, including the ballooning costs of Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. That was done in 1983 with the reform of Social Security and in 1986 with tax reform. However, the most recent effort through the Joint Select Committee failed.

The question hangs in the air: Will the Congress face the problem pragmatically and implement rational solutions?

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

Scribe: Jeff Rasley

Vol 89 No 30 - August 13, 2012

Tours of the WW II Victory Museum (National Military History Center) and the Kruse Automotive and Carriage Museum

Arranged By: Jim Bettner

Kruse Museum

Kruse Museum

Scientech Club members toured two museums at Auburn Indiana. These were the National Military History Center and the Kruse Automotive and Carriage Museum. Both are operated by the Dean V. Kruse Foundation Inc. The World War II collection was purchased from the Victory Museum in Messancy, Belgium by Dean and Kristin Kruse. This collection includes more than 150 vehicles from that era along with thousands of artifacts. Numerous veterans and their families as well as other interested individuals have donated items to the collection. Included are 37 motorcycles from World War II. The Victory Museum endeavors to honor and preserve the experiences of individuals and nations during the Second World War.

Stage Coach

Stage Coach

The adjacent Kruse Automotive and Carriage Museum features an ever-changing array of vehicles. Racing vehicles have been in the forefront of this collection. Carl Casper, renowned Hollywood car designer, carriage collector and restorer, had several items of his collection on display. These include the Batmobile, the General Lee from the famed television series "Dukes of Hazard," and several restored Bavarian royal carriages from the 1700s.

Race Car

Race Car

Many interesting carriages were on display including that of President Grant and the funeral hearse of President McKinley. In the room adjacent to the carriages were many speed and drag racers including the 1911 Indianapolis 500 Mile Race winning car driven by Ray Harroun and relieved by Cy Patschke. Other vehicles owned by Carl Casper on display included those used on the "A Team" and "Mission Impossible" television series. The motorcycle driven by the Fonz on "Happy Days" could also be seen.


Futuristic Car

In addition the International Monster Truck Museum and Hall of Fame was opened in 2011. This display is to document the history of the monster trucks sport. On exhibit are Bigfoot and the Orange Blossom Special.

Many Harley-Davidson, BMW and Indian motorcycles were on display. Among the manufacturers of these various vehicles were Krupp, Fiat, Dodge, GMC, Willys-Overland and Mercedes-Benz.



One of the most impressive items on display was the famous "German 88." This 88-caliber (3.46") weapon had a barrel 15'4" in length. It had a maximum horizontal range of 9 miles and a maximum vertical range of 6.5 miles. The projectile weight varied from 20 to 33.6 pounds and could be fired at a rate of 15 to 20 rounds per minute. Some consider this to be the best artillery piece of the war. It was useful as an anti-tank, anti-personnel as well as anti-aircraft gun. Its platform allowed the gun to be fired in any direction and moved and withdrawn quickly.


88 mm Gun

The vertical range of 6.5 miles made it effective against heavy Allied bombers. Because of its great penetrating power against armor it could destroy tanks at up to 2 miles. Its high velocity and low trajectory meant that the gun's ordinance would travel faster than sound and provide no warning to the targeted troops.

There were several dioramas and pictures of important military and naval battles including Iwo Jima, Okinawa and the battle for Bastogne. Pictures of the first atomic bomb, "Little Boy" dropped on Hiroshima, and the second bomb, "Fat Man" dropped on Nagasaki, were included, as well as the Enola Gay and its crew.

Click HERE to view the Museum web site with additional pictures of the exhibits.

Scribe: Jerry Kurlander

Vol 89 No 31 - August 20, 2012

The Monsters of the Midway

The Strange and Wonderful History of

University of Chicago Football

Presented By: Jeff Rasley

Jeff Rasley

Jeff Rasley

Jeff is a member of the Scientech Club. He is an honors graduate of the University of Chicago, Indiana University School of Law, and Christian Theologic Seminary.

John D. Rockefeller gave the money and Marshall Field gave the land to create the University of Chicago in 1890. Eighty five Nobel prize winners have served on the faculty and/or studied there. In the first third of the 20th century the University was known more for its football than academic achievements. Amos Alonzo Stagg was the athletic director who established football as the premier sport. He was the winningest football coach until 1982 when he was surpassed by Bear Bryant of University of Alabama.

Coach Stagg

Coach Stagg and Players

He coached the U of Chicago Maroons from 1892 until 1932 winning many Big Ten and national championships. The team acquired an additional nickname of "Monsters of the Midway" because the campus runs through the grounds used for the Columbia Exposition World's Fair of 1893.

In 1935 Jay Berwanger, a powerful halfback, won the Heisman Trophy. His running with a stiff arm is represented in the pose on the trophy. He turned down an offer to play for the Chicago Bears owned by George Halas, but Halas took the "C" logo of the Maroons anyway.

Jay Berwanger

Jay Berwanger

Milton "Mitt" Romney, a star quarterback in 1922, was a first cousin once removed of George Romney , father of the current Republican presidential candidate.

During those early years football had become important to the identity of the U. of Chicago. Academic excellence however was of primary importance to the faculty and administration. Athletic scholarships were rarely given and there was no slack given in meeting academic requirements. As a result, academic standards rose as football quality declined. In 1929 Robert Maynard Hutchins became president and he opposed football at the school. Hutchins and the great scholar Mortimer Adler developed the "Common Core" curriculum used in many universities today.

Chicao vs Princeton

Chicago vs Princeton 1922

The 1939 football season was a disaster. This along with the start of World War II resulted in the death of football in that era. The 55,000-seat Stagg Stadium grandstand was again to become famous as the site of the first controlled chain nuclear reaction as part of the Manhattan Project for the development of the nuclear bomb. A Henry Moore bronze sculpture now marks the spot where this occurred on December 2, 1942.

Hutchins's "infernal nuisance" football made a modest comeback in 1969 after a 30-year absence. This being the era of student protests, there were many by those who opposed football. When Ed Levi became president in 1968 he promoted a well-rounded experience for college students and encouraged participation in Division III athletics. There was great fun at the games including a sash-covered refrigerator as homecoming queen, a kazoo marching band and a distant steam calliope playing.

UC Drum

UC Band Drum

In 1974 an article in People Magazine labeled the Maroons the worst team in college football. This was considered an honor by the students and faculty. J.W. Boyer, a college dean, was recently quoted in the New York Times praising the football program, not necessarily for the teams play but for its appropriate niche within the University.

Jeff gave many humorous anecdotes as well as important points about the University of Chicago. "Monsters of the Midway" is available in digital format from Amazon and I would recommend it for a fun read.

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

Scribe: Jerry Kurlander

Vol 89 No 32 - August 27, 2012

Sword & Pen: A Life of Lew Wallace

Presented By: Ray Boomhower, Editor, Traces Magazine, IHS

Ray Boomhower

Our presenter today was Ray Boomhower of the Indiana Historical Society where he is editor of the Traces magazine. Ray has degrees from IU in Journalism and Political Science and a Masters in US History. He is the author of nine books including a biography of Lew Wallace.

Ray started with a telling anecdote. On May 19, 1861 Colonel Lew Wallace assembled the newly formed 11th Indiana Volunteers at the Statehouse. Governor Oliver P Morton had charged Wallace with raising the regiment to support the Union cause. Wallace, recalling that Jefferson Davis had accused IN troops of running from battle in the Mexican American war, had his solders take a knee and swear to "Remember Buena Vista". LW was a romantic personality who inspired his troops. He loved the military life and the honor it denoted.

LW was born in Brookville in 1827. The family moved to Covington and then Crawfordville where he was raised. LW was often truant from school (a near juvenile delinquent) and preferred fishing and hunting to a classroom. Growing up he trained with the Montgomery County Guards and relished the military lifestyle. Meanwhile, his parents (Father was West Point graduate) were frantic to get him an education. Finally Professor Hoshour got through to him and ignited a love for reading and writing. His mantra was "cleanness of expression".

Lew Wallace

Lew Wallace

However, at 18 he enlisted as a Lieutenant in the Mexican American War. He did not see combat, but his path was set.

On May 6, 1852 he married Susan Elston. Her father (Elston Bank) was less than enthralled as LW hadn't accomplished anything. They were a perfect match.

When the Civil War broke out, as noted in the above anecdote, LW was commissioned by Gov Morton to raise a regiment. He was commissioned as a "political" General (non-West Point) which would hurt him later. Their first action was in Romney, Virginia, where they made a "splendid dash" (Lincoln's description) to push the Confederates back. LW's men were devoted to him as he inspired them and could think on his feet. Their next action was at Donaldson Creek at the KY/TN border near the Cumberland River. LW reserve troops arrived to save Grant's flank and preserve victory. He won praise, but was publicly presumptuous.


Battle at Shiloh

Shiloh, a very bloody battle in April 1862, proved to be his fall from grace. LW's troops were in reserve, but when Grant called for their advance there was confusion in the orders. By the time they arrived the battle was lost. Grant and his superior, Halleck, blamed the "political" general, LW. He was put on the shelf and sent back to Indiana. LW resented Grant's decision, but could not get him to reconsider.

In Sept 1862 LW was credited with saving Cincinnati when he organized a force to prevent a Confederate attack.

Lincoln gave LW a new command in Maryland with a key amendment on slavery on the ballot. LW devised a plan to hold the election without dictating the result. He earned high praise.

At the battle of Monocacy Creek, MD, July 9, 1964 LW engaged Confederate Gen Early who had already defeated two Union armies. He lost the battle, but delayed their advance one day allowing time for critical reserves to arrive to defend Washington. His action was deemed critical.

After the war, he resumed his law practice and began writing with support from his wife who was a noted author herself. His first novel was "The Fair God" had modest success. His second was Ben Hur (1880). He was motivated by his agnostic friend Robert Ingersol. LW thoroughly researched the biblical history as the book was based on the life of Christ. It was promoted by preachers and was a sensational success.

LW also served as the Territorial Governor of New Mexico and as ambassador to Turkey and then retired to writing in Crawfordsville. He passed in 1905.

He and Gov Morton are the two statues in the National Statuary Hall representing IN.

Ray considers Lew Wallace as Indiana's Renaissance man as he was an accomplished general, lawyer, politician, and author. LW's only regret was he never got over the "slurs of Shiloh".

Next spring Scientech plans a tour to the Wallace Museum in Crawfordsville.

Scribe: John Peer

Vol 89 No 33 - September 10, 2012

Clean Energy Jobs in the USA; Manufacturing of Machinery for Wind-Powered Generators

Presented By: Noel Davis, CEO, Vela Gear Systems

Noel Davis

Noel Davis
Vela Gear Systems

Mr. Davis is the head of Vela Gears, a relatively new company which is primarily making very large, high quality gears and related parts, particularly for large wind-powered generators. The US had been surpassed by the Europeans and Asians in making such products, and Vela and other companies are struggling to recover primacy.

At the present time, demand for coal is starting to fall, in favor of renewable and carbon-free energy sources such as wind generation. However, now the use of natural gas is increasing because of the use of "fracking" to increase the yield of gas from each well. Natural gas is a carbon energy source, the use of which governments are trying to reduce everywhere. Although the cost of natural gas is low now, it is expected to rise as the demand increases until wind energy will be economically attractive without government subsidies. Mr. Davis estimates that in spite of the present popularity of natural gas, 20% of electricity will be produced by wind generation by 2030, as predicted by the Department of Energy.

Wind Generator

Wind Generator Components

Mr. Davis showed us a powerful economic comparison between the Meadow Lake wind farm and the Edwardsport coal gasification plant, both in Indiana:

  Edwardsport Meadow Lake
Build Time 10 Years 3 Years
Output 620 MW 1000 MW
Cost $3 Billion $1 Billion

The advantages of wind generation are obvious.

Wind power requires very large equipment, as everyone knows now. Winds blow faster at higher altitude, so the towers are growing taller. The extension of wind farms to offshore locations allows even taller towers in windier locations, with sails 126 meters in diameter. Each may produce 5 MW. Clearly, the transmissions which drive the generators must be very strong and require continuing maintenance.

Vela Gears intends to provide American-made gears for wind farms. They now have equipment to cut and grind both spur and internal gears up to 3 meters diameter, strong enough for the duty. At the present time 85% of gears for wind turbines are imported. Vela Gears is often told that they can't equal European and Asian products because we no longer are training superior people to make such products. Their goal, however, is to create a new generation of American skilled tradesmen, as we did, for example, at the beginning of World War II.

Scribe: Joe Jones

Vol 89 No 34 - September 17, 2012

Musical Interactivity and Telematic Art

Presented By: Scott Deal, Professor of Music-Director, Donald Tavel Arts and Technology Research Center, IUPUI

Scott Deal

Scott Deal

Dr. Deal is a professor of Music and Director of the Donald Tavel Arts Technology Research Center at IUPUI. He is a musician (a drummer) with a PhD in Musical Arts and has become an expert in synthesizing art and technology. He describes his field of Telematics as the synthesis of art and communications.

In 1906, Thaddeus Cahill invented the Telharmonium. The instrument weighed 200 tons and required forty train cars to transport the pieces from Massachusetts to NYC for its installation in Telharmonium Hall. It used telephone lines with a keyboard to create the first electronic music.

The Internet gave rise to new forms of musical and artistic expression. Computers made interactivity between new technologies, media and artistic performance possible. A local example of telematic art was seen in a performance of Dance Kaleidoscope at Clowes Theater in the new library. The dancers performed in the theater while a piano player in California played live while projected onto a screen behind the dancers.

Performing organizations are making increasing use of technology. In the future only one third of orchestra company employees will be musicians. The rest will be in technology, communications, marketing, administration, etc.

Fiber optics has been laid in the ground in capacity far beyond current use. Internet-2 has vastly more band width than the current internet. IUPUI is a center for Internet-2.

Telematic Collective is under Dr. Deal's direction. The group is comprised of IUPUI graduate students, who perform with traditional musical instruments combined with computer technology and multi-media. The group will be performing a collaborative opera, which will have only two singers but will use multiple screens at multiple sites in a multi-media production. A panel of scientists will serve as the "Greek Chorus." The opera is entitled "Auksalay A Telematic Opera". The world premier is October 29 at six sites, including Indianapolis. "Auksalay" is Inuit for "melting snow ice." The opera is about climate change.

There will be different performers at each site. The music is composed such that the different pieces overlay into one synchronized production. It will also include movies, the Greek Chorus of scientists and audience participation through texting onto a screen. Audience participation is a throwback to an earlier era when audiences would participate with vocal commentary and the use of ripe fruit to express immediate reactions to a performance.

Financing for the opera has come through many different grants; $80,000 has been acquired for the production, which will cover the costs of the premier performance. Much of Dr. Deal's time is spent in seeking funding for such projects.

Scribe: Jeff Rasley

Vol 89 No 35 - September 24, 2012

The Miller House and Garden, Modernism in the MidWest

Presented By: Bradley C. Brooks, Director of Historic Resources, Indianapolis Museum of Art

Bradley Brooks

Bradley Brooks

"America's Most Significant Modernist House" was commissioned by industrialist and philanthropist, Joseph Irwin Miller and his wife Xenia Simons Miller in 1953. The Miller House expands upon an architectural tradition developed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe-epitomizing the International Modernist aesthetic-with an open and flowing layout, flat roof and stone and glass walls. The rooms, configured beneath a grid pattern of skylights supported by cruciform steel columns, are filled with textiles that feature strong colors and playful patterns. Amid the residence's large geometric gardens, its grandest feature is an allée of honey locust trees that runs along the west side of the house.

Miller House

Miller House

The house showcases the work of leading 20th-century architects and designers Eero Saarinen, Alexander Girard and Dan Kiley.

The house of 6800 square feet sits on 13 acres of land. Three acres contain geometric gardens surrounding the house; 10 acres are a flood plain extending down from the house to the river. A variety of trees and shrubs were planted in geometric patterns with varying elevations and shades of green and gray the dominating colors. Very few flowers or colors were used in the landscape.

Miller House Interior

Conversation Pit

The house contains a large conversation pit in which the colors were changed to match the seasons. Skylights provide light in most of the interior. The five children had rather small dormitory-like bedrooms that opened into a large shared play room. The parents had a large apartment-like master suite with a fireplace and personal offices, in addition to dressing rooms. The kitchen was gray steel with black and white cabinets. The dining room had a fixed table with a fountain in the middle. The house was surrounded by a terrazzo terrace to facilitate outdoor living. An out building, once a green house, was later Mr. Miller's office.

Tours at Miller House and Garden are possible through the Columbus Area Visitors Center.

Click HERE to read more about the Miller House

Scribe: Charles Hamm