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Nano Bite: April 2014

Welcome to the April Nano Bite, the monthly e-newsletter for the Nanoscale Informal Science Education Network (NISE Net).

NanoDays 2014 Round-Up
  • If you just hosted an event, thank you so much for all your efforts! If you are hosting an upcoming event, you may want to check out some last minute tips and resources for your event. If you're looking for a little NanoDays inspiration, here are some great videos from past events
  • If you're hosting NanoDays events, don't forget to submit a report about your experiences by Thursday, May 1st [learn more].
  • In addition to reports from organizations hosting events, the NISE Network is also conducting a nationwide survey of all NanoDays volunteers, who can share experiences and feedback here.
  • Share your NanoDays photos with the NISE Network - learn how here.
  • The ultimate reality NISE Network TV. Watch a time lapse video [RT 2:22] that shows just how the 2014 NanoDays Physical Kit came to be!
To keep up with all the NanoDays action, connect with the NISE Network on Facebook, LinkedIn and tweet @nisenet #nanodays
The NISE Network is gearing up for an exciting spring filled with conferences, opportunities to connect with colleagues, and chances to begin new partnerships. The NISE Network will be present at the following upcoming conferences and we look forward to seeing many of you there.
2014 Spring MRS Meeting - April 21-25 - San Francisco, CA
  • NISE Network Booth - Visit the NISE Network booth and learn about becoming a science collaborator!
  • NanoDays Booth - NanoDays 2015 takes place March 28-April 5, 2015. Learn how to get involved!
  • Hands-on Nano Coffee Hours (M-W; 9:30-10:30am and 2:30-3:30pm)
  • Student Mixer at Marriott Marquis - Mingle and explore interactive science activities (Monday, April 21st from 7:00-8:00pm)
  • Professional Development & Education Sessions
 ACM Interactivity 2014 - May 13-16 - Phoenix, AZ
  • NISE Network Booth - Marketplace Exhibit Hall (Thursday, May 15th from 7:30am-4:30pm)
  • Special Evening Event: Arizona Science Center - The NISE Network with have a table with fun, hands-on nano activities for guests. Come join us! (Tuesday, May 13th from 7:00-9:00pm; pre-registration and ticket required)
  • Professional Development Sessions - Hear from NISE Net Partners
  AAM - May 18-21 - Seattle, WA
  • NISE Network Happy Hour - Partners old and new are welcomed to join the festivities, no RSVP required (Monday, May 19th from 5:00-7:00pm)
  • Professional Development Sessions- Hear from NISE Net Partners
Interested in other ways to connect with NISE Network professionals? Join the NISE Network community on LinkedIn to stay connected with current nanotech news and to receive program announcements.
Are you looking for ways to extend the NanoDays experience to your museum visitors? Scientists at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute's Nanotechnology Center have created NanoSpace®, a fun, free virtual theme park where visitors are introduced to the nanoscale world of atoms and molecules through 25 different interactive educational games and activities. See linked resources "Molecularium NanoSpace" and "Molecularium Molecules to the Max"

Featured Finding: Updates from NISE Network Evaluation and Research
Featured evaluation and research findings about involvement with professional organizations: Of the NISE Network partners who filled out our recent Annual Partner Survey, half are engaged with the Association of Science-Technology Centers (ASTC) through membership or attending events. Other popular professional organizations include National Science Teachers Association (NSTA, 27%) and the Association of Children’s Museums (ACM, 24%). Read the full Evaluation and Research blog post here.

Thank you to all the organizers and presenters in the Winter 2014 Brown-Bag Series for providing informative and engaging conversations and thank you to those partners who joined us in these discussions! Did you miss a conversation? All brown-bag recordings are available online [search archive].

→ Upcoming Conferences and Meetings
World Health Day. Did you know that more than half of the world's population is at risk from vector-borne diseases such as malaria and dengue? Malaria is one of the world's deadliest diseases, sickening more than 300 million people and killing more than 600,000 each year, mostly young children. Traditional malarial testing includes a "blood smear" test, which requires a lab technician, chemical reagents, and microscopes for analysis. This method is expensive and often unavailable in clinics in developing countries.

Researchers from Rice University have developed a new diagnostic technology that uses a low-powered laser that creates tiny vapor "nanobubbles" inside malaria-infected cells that allow for an extremely sensitive diagnosis. This method takes advantage of the optical properties and nanosize of hemozoin, a nanoparticle produced by a malaria parasite inside red blood cells. This is the first test that can accurately detect malaria in seconds without the use of blood sampling or reagents. The first field trials of the technology in humans are expected to begin in Houston in early 2014.
→ Earth Day. Researchers from the University of Manchester in the UK are investigating whether membranes made from graphene oxide (nanostructures) might be ideal for water filtration and desalination applications. Traditional desalination efforts include thermal processes, which tend to be high in energy and cost. It wasn't until recently that scientists isolated graphene and have now found that the graphene-oxide membranes allow water to flow through but block out all other gases and vapors. Researchers' "ultimate goal is to make a filter device from the carbon-based material that allows you to obtain a glass of drinkable water from sea water using a hand-held mechanical pump."
A list of nano activities for use throughout the year is available on the NISE Network’s list of seasonal activities.

Nano, where are thee?
I cannot see with thy eye

Oh, you're are all around!

This month's haiku submitted by Kayla Berry, NISE Network Coordinator.

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Read the Nano Bite e-newsletter online at /newsletter/nano-bite-april-2014.