Field Research

Research News

Read the latest news about research conducted by investigators in the College of Earth and Mineral Sciences. Our faculty and students are continually advancing technology, creating solutions and expanding knowledge with new and innovative research.

Scalable two-dimensional materials advance future-gen electronics
02/14/2018

Since the discovery of the remarkable properties of graphene, scientists have increasingly focused research on the many other two-dimensional materials possible, both those found in nature and those concocted in the lab. However, growing high-quality, crystalline 2-D materials at scale has proven a significant challenge.


Repetition key to self-healing, flexible medical devices
02/08/2018

Medical devices powered by synthetic proteins created from repeated sequences of proteins may be possible, according to materials science and biotechnology experts, who looked at material inspired by the proteins in squid ring teeth.


NSF grant to help create sustainable fuels through artificial photosynthesis
02/08/2018

A grant totaling $1.2 million over three years has been awarded to researchers at Penn State and Cornell University by the National Science Foundation to identify a material that can most efficiently separate water into hydrogen and oxygen, to collect hydrogen as a sustainable fuel source.


Data driven dialogue: Scientists bring groups together on water quality concerns
01/31/2018

Shale Network, a team of scientists studying water quality around Marcellus Shale drilling in Pennsylvania, has spent the last six years fostering a dialogue between concerned citizens, watershed groups, government regulators and representatives from large energy companies around water quality data in the state. The team published a paper in the journal Science last week discussing the impacts of its project.


Doctoral student melds passions for science, helping others in FEMA job
01/26/2018

As an emergency management specialist with the Federal Emergency Management Association, Adrienne Kramer is applying her geography skills to build maps, analytical tools and other resources to help the agency improve its response and recovery operations.


Microbes may help astronauts transform human waste into food
01/25/2018

Human waste may one day be a valuable resource for astronauts on deep-space missions. Now, a Penn State research team has shown that it is possible to rapidly break down solid and liquid waste to grow food with a series of microbial reactors, while simultaneously minimizing pathogen growth.


Century of data shows sea-level rise shifting tides in Delaware, Chesapeake bays
01/24/2018

The warming climate is expected to affect coastal regions worldwide as glaciers and ice sheets melt, raising sea level globally. For the first time, an international team has found evidence of how sea-level rise already is affecting high and low tides in both the Chesapeake and Delaware bays, two large estuaries of the eastern United States.


Petroleum and natural gas student among elite leaders at global conference
01/22/2018

Being an elite student in an elite program at Penn State affords some elite opportunities. For Andrew Vislosky, a senior majoring in petroleum and natural gas engineering at Penn State, it meant being one of eight students worldwide granted an all-expenses-paid trip to the Oil & Money Conference recently held in London.


Elsworth, Liu among 15 named distinguished faculty at Penn State
01/22/2018

Penn State's Office of the Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs has named 15 distinguished faculty.


Wilf named Paleontological Society Fellow for commitment to research, students
01/18/2018

In graduate school Peter Wilf published his first paper in the journal Paleobiology. So, the geosciences professor said being named a Fellow of the Paleontological Society, which publishes the journal, was an extra special honor.