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.

Researcher tackling loss of healthy traditional diets in Morocco
07/12/2018

Morocco's food landscape has been undergoing a major shift: Obesity is on the rise while traditional, healthy food is becoming more scarce. Penn State geography researcher Bronwen Powell wants to know what's driving these trends.


Study sheds new light on forests' response to atmospheric pollution
07/12/2018

How forests respond to elevated nitrogen levels from atmospheric pollution is not always the same. While a forest is filtering nitrogen as expected, a higher percentage than previously seen is leaving the system again as the potent greenhouse gas nitrous oxide, say researchers.


Researcher pulling from past to shape future of glass research
07/09/2018

Glass has been a part of society for thousands of years, so it is easy for this material to become invisible and overlooked, but a Penn State materials scientist has laid out a plan to map the glass genome and advance the future of glass.


Athletic 'pull' increases campus diversity
07/02/2018

The next time you see your favorite collegiate athlete on the field or court, think again about their road to getting there.


Rapidly rising bedrock may help delay Antarctic Ice Sheet collapse
07/02/2018

The bedrock beneath West Antarctica is rising rapidly in response to the ongoing ice melt of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, according to an international team of researchers, who indicated that their results have important implications for estimating future ice sheet stability and projections of ice mass losses.


Sintering atomically thin materials with ceramics now possible
06/29/2018

For the first time, researchers have created a nanocomposite of ceramics and a two-dimensional material, opening the door for new designs of nanocomposites with such applications as solid-state batteries, thermoelectrics, varistors, catalysts, chemical sensors and much more.


Self-heating, fast-charging battery makes electric vehicles climate-immune
06/28/2018

Californians do not purchase electric vehicles because they are cool, they buy EVs because they live in a warm climate. Conventional lithium-ion batteries cannot be rapidly charged at temperatures below 50 degrees Fahrenheit, but now a team of Penn State engineers has created a battery that can self-heat, allowing rapid charging regardless of the outside chill.


Carbon dioxide-to-methanol process improved by catalyst
06/28/2018

Dramatic improvements have been made to the process of converting carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, to methanol, a fuel and building block for a wide range of everyday materials, according to Penn State researchers.


Nuclear power shutdowns won't spike power prices
06/19/2018

Despite economic woes that could shutter two of Pennsylvania's nuclear power plants -- which generate 6 percent of the state's power -- power prices will remain steady due to low natural gas prices, according to Seth Blumsack, associate professor of energy policy and economics, Penn State.


Penn State to lead $1.4M grant to probe flaws in metal additive manufacturing
06/14/2018

A team led by Penn State's Applied Research Laboratory, in collaboration with the Center for Innovative Processing thru Direct Digital Deposition, has received a $1.4 million grant by the Air Force Research Laboratory to examine the random flaws that arise during the process of powder bed fusion additive manufacturing.