/ Modified sep 22, 2022 5:11 p.m.

Episode 904

Chubasco Channel, Benefits of a Nestbox, Space Robots, SensorLab

Chubasco Channel
Local artist Alex! Jimenez spent a year creating an artwork commissioned by Tucson water to raise awareness of the future of water in the Southwest region. Using field recordings collected during the 2021 monsoon season, she collaborated with artist Logan Philips to create an immersive sound installation along the Santa Crus River on Dia San Juan, a local holiday that celebrates the coming of the monsoon.

Benefits of a Nestbox
Real estate is at a premium right now, not only for humans but for birds as well. We can help our local birds by providing safe places to nest. As the Tucson metropolitan area grows, bird habitat is lost. Placing a nestbox in your yard can help Kestrels, Screech-Owls, Lucy's Warblers, and other cavity-nesting birds find a home. We talk to Olya Weekley of the Tucson Audubon Society to learn more about the benefits of a nestbox.

Space Robots
It has now been 50 years since NASA astronauts last set foot on the Moon, but a return mission might soon be in the offing. This time, though, human explorers aren’t likely to be alone. The Space and Terrestrial Robotic Exploration (SpaceTREx) Laboratory at the University of Arizona, headed by aerospace engineer Jekan Thanga, is currently developing swarms of autonomous robots capable of constructing bases and mining for resources on celestial bodies like the Moon, Mars, or asteroids. He is teaming up with mining engineer Moe Momayez to develop specialized drilling tools to mount on these space robots, which could one day make prolonged space exploration more practical.

The SensorLab is a resource that will give researchers access to sensor technology and digital mixed reality. It is a University of Arizona Health Sciences initiative that promotes research that relates to human physiology and behavior and emphasizes sensor-based research. U of A faculty and students will be able to rent devices like the EMOTIV Insight 5 Channel Mobile Brainwear—a headset that connects with the smartphone app to track brain movements and can even control the movement of other devices.

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