Science and Technology

Red McCombs gives $50 million to UT Austin business school

May 11, 2000

In the largest single donation in the 117-year history of The University of Texas at Austin, San Antonio businessman Red McCombs has given a $50 million cash gift to the University's business school, UT officials announced at a press conference today (May 11).

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Origins of the universe: McDonald Observatory director traces a star-studded history that includes UT Austin's Hobby-Eberly telescope and its ability to study bright starts of nearby galaxies.

May 9, 2000

The picture begins with some small thing sometimes called the "cosmic egg" but no one really knows how big it was. The thing exploded and out of that explosion came all the matter, all the energy, and all the space that exists today. For years astronomers have worked hard to figure out when the explosion occurred. That determination turns out to be quite difficult, but a consensus seems to be forming around a date about 13 billion years ago. There are many details still to be worked out involving understanding why the bang happened and connections of the Big Bang to the production of the atomic and sub-atomic particles which were produced, but the general picture is well understood.

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High resolution mapping technology may help decrease hurricane damage

May 3, 2000

A sophisticated mapping process that combines laser scanning and satellite global positioning technology holds new hope for lessening storm damage in hurricane-prone areas, experts say.

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New geological research suggests undersea cracks along East Coast continental shelf pose danger of landslides and tsunamis

May 2, 2000

Geological research by scientists from The University of Texas at Austin's Institute for Geophysics, the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and Columbia University's Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory suggests that landslides on the outer continental shelf and slope along the Mid-Atlantic coast could have the potential to trigger tsunamis that might have devastating effects on populated coastal areas. Tsunamis are sometimes inaccurately referred to as tidal waves.

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Humanity's first oyster bar: Eritrean stone tools push back dates of earliest use of marine resources

May 2, 2000

An international research team, including two geologists from The University of Texas at Austin, has unearthed ancient stone tools from an unusual geological setting in Africa that may contribute to solving the mystery of the geographic origins and adaptations of modern humans. The findings push back by 10,000 years the date for earliest evidence of human consumption of shellfish, marking the onset of a new type of feeding strategy in human evolution.

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