20 episodes

Technology Today Podcast launched in November 2018, offering a new way to listen and learn about the technology, science, engineering and research impacting our lives and changing our world. The podcast is presented by Southwest Research Institute, a nonprofit contract R&D organization developing innovative solutions for government and industry clients. Podcast host Lisa Peña is breaking through the tech jargon and talking to the scientists, engineers and researchers building the future of technology. It’s a conversation bringing tech to life and helping us understand how technology, science, engineering and research link to our daily lives.

Technology Today Southwest Research Institute

    • Technology
    • 5.0, 10 Ratings

Technology Today Podcast launched in November 2018, offering a new way to listen and learn about the technology, science, engineering and research impacting our lives and changing our world. The podcast is presented by Southwest Research Institute, a nonprofit contract R&D organization developing innovative solutions for government and industry clients. Podcast host Lisa Peña is breaking through the tech jargon and talking to the scientists, engineers and researchers building the future of technology. It’s a conversation bringing tech to life and helping us understand how technology, science, engineering and research link to our daily lives.

    Episode 19: Mask Materials Testing

    Episode 19: Mask Materials Testing

    COVID-19 has amped up the need for safe, effective masks. Manufacturers and health systems are getting creative, thinking of new ways to make or reuse face coverings. These new materials and materials that undergo tough sanitation methods require rigorous testing to ensure they can protect frontline health care workers. The SwRI particle emissions laboratory is well equipped for this challenge. Once used exclusively for engine emissions testing, the lab is now expanding its capabilities to test mask materials.

    On this episode, we talk to the SwRI engineer leading the lab through this crucial effort. He tells us why his team is doing this work as a community service, at no charge. Plus, he shares what makes a mask effective.

    Listen now as we share the science behind mask safety.

    • 32 min
    Episode 18: Combatting COVID-19

    Episode 18: Combatting COVID-19

    The novel Coronavirus is raging through communities around the world. It’s a virus never before seen in humans, and therefore, not recognized by our immune systems. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), people over 65 and those with underlying health conditions are at the highest risk. There is no vaccine or drug therapy to prevent or treat the illness caused by the virus, known as Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). The heroes of this battle are the healthcare workers on the frontlines and the scientists and researchers in the labs developing a weapon to take down this persistent enemy.

    On this episode, we talk to two scientists joining the fight against COVID-19. SwRI scientist Dr. Jonathan Bohmann is using the Rhodium™ Software to analyze drug compounds that could successfully fight COVID-19. He’s working closely with Dr. Ricardo Carrion and his team from SwRI’s neighboring, San Antonio-based R&D organization Texas Biomedical Research Institute. Dr. Carrion explains how scientists everywhere are joining forces to eradicate the virus.

    Listen now as we discuss the global pandemic that has rapidly changed the way we live.

    • 37 min
    Episode 17: A Superhydrophobic Solution

    Episode 17: A Superhydrophobic Solution

    The award-winning LotusFlo™ superhydrophobic coating is solving a major problem in offshore oil drilling. Substances often clog pipes, slowing or stopping the flow of oil. This innovative coating applied through a unique plasma process keeps substances from adhering to pipe surfaces. Better flow makes recovering petroleum for fuel and other products more cost-effective, which is a win for consumers too. But that’s not the only perk, LotusFlo is also better for the environment, cutting out the need for harsh chemicals that pollute the ocean. R&D Magazine recently recognized LotusFlo as one of the 100 most significant innovations of 2019. Find out why!

    Plus, an SwRI engineer shares his breakthrough moment bringing about cleaner engines and cleaner air. In Ask Us Anything, we’re tackling the popular tech topic, machine learning.

    Listen and learn from the people shaping our world through science, engineering, research and technology.

    • 31 min
    Episode 16: Superior Signals Intelligence

    Episode 16: Superior Signals Intelligence

    Antennas make modern communication possible from mobile phones to Wi-Fi. They also make our communities safer by supporting emergency, law enforcement and national security efforts. Even though they are vital to our way of life, we rarely hear about antenna advancements. In this episode, we’re talking to an SwRI electrical engineer who helped develop a sophisticated antenna technology taking signals intelligence to a new level. His team won a prestigious R&D 100 Award for the AF-369 VHF/UHF DF Antenna, recognized as a top 100 innovation of 2019. We’ll tell you what makes it a superior signals intelligence technology.

    In today’s Breakthroughs, artificial intelligence rescues a scientist buried in data. In Ask Us Anything, we’re untangling quantum entanglement.

    Listen and learn from the people shaping our world through science, engineering, research and technology.

    • 31 min
    Episode 15: Hypersonic Progress

    Episode 15: Hypersonic Progress

    The future will be fast! That’s why our guests launch projectiles faster than Mach 5, five times the speed of sound. They’re studying hypersonic speeds in an SwRI lab, reaching thousands of miles per hour and temperatures hotter than the sun. In this episode, we discuss their discoveries and where their work could one day take us. Think commercial hypersonic flights, coast to coast, in an hour!

    In today’s Breakthroughs, earthquakes shake up a geologist’s view of nature, highlighting the vast connections that exist all around us. And how does sunlight reach Earth? A space physicist has the answer in Ask us Anything.

    Listen now.

    • 32 min
    Episode 14: Extreme Product Testing

    Episode 14: Extreme Product Testing

    It’s shopping season. When we buy electronics and other products, we expect them to be reliable and safe. Our guest today is a product assurance expert who subjects consumer products and other equipment to a range of adverse conditions. Before you buy and use them, products in her lab have been exposed to extreme drops, peak temperatures and corrosive environments to make sure they hold up. In this episode, we discuss why extreme testing is critical. Plus, our expert shares some valuable consumer tips.

    In today’s Breakthroughs, an ancient woodworking technique leads to a new discovery. And in Ask us Anything, we call in a robotics expert to answer a curious listener’s question.

    Listen now.

    • 27 min

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