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 59: Preparing for the Upcoming Eclipses
In the coming months, people in the U.S. will have a front row seat to two upcoming eclipses. An annular eclipse on October 14, 2023 will cross North, Central and South America. A total eclipse will cross North America on April 8, 2024. While spectators are preparing to view the rare celestial events, scientists are getting ready for unique research opportunities. Our SwRI eclipse expert is organizing teams across the country to capture the total eclipse from ground and air. He’s talking about safety during an eclipse, how the events will advance science and his eclipse-chasing adventures.
Listen now as SwRI Solar Astrophysicist Dr. Amir Caspi discusses safe viewing techniques, the best spots to catch the eclipses and what scientists want to learn from the spectacular celestial events.
Episode 58: Texas Manufacturing Assistance Center
From food to transportation, manufacturing operations keep our lives moving. Manufacturers are a vital part of our economy and offer rewarding career opportunities. The Texas Manufacturing Assistance Center (TMAC) at SwRI supports small to large manufacturers with the tools for success, including training and workforce development. They are changing the perception of manufacturing work, helping companies update processes and integrate new technology, such as robotics and software, into production lines. While this is a regional center, TMAC’s robust manufacturing network builds connections with manufacturers across the country.
Listen now as SwRI Sr. Program Manager and TMAC Regional Director Bill Rafferty discusses TMAC’s impact and overcoming challenges in manufacturing.
Episode 57: ENABLE™ 3D Motion Analysis Engine
The Engine for Automatic Biomechanical Evaluation or ENABLE™ captures and analyzes 3D motion to help athletes achieve peak performance and avoid injury. Beyond sports, it has the potential to be a useful tool for healthcare and military applications. Strategically placed cameras and powerful algorithms drive this portable, user-friendly system, eliminating the need for attached, movement-restricting sensors.
Plus, human performance professionals will connect with sports scientists at the upcoming International Human Performance Summit hosted by SwRI. Hear how your organization can join the Summit to explore the latest breakthroughs in human performance research.
Listen now as SwRI Engineers Ty Templin and Travis Eliason discuss SwRI’s ENABLE 3D motion analysis engine and the upcoming Summit.
Episode 56: The Mighty Microcapsule
As you go about your day, you likely encounter microcapsules or microspheres everywhere. From your morning shower shampoo to your nighttime sleep aid, microencapsulation is working to improve your life. SwRI’s microencapsulation experts create custom, controlled-release capsules for a variety of products. Since 1949, SwRI has tailored this tiny technology for a broad spectrum of industries, including food, pharmaceutical, cosmetic, agricultural, veterinary medicine, biomedical and more.
Listen now as SwRI Scientist Dr. James Oxley discusses the process of microencapsulation, the wide range of products that contain hidden capsules, the history of the mighty microcapsule and what the future holds for this technology.
Episode 55: Fracture Control with NASGRO®
NASGRO® fracture control software analyzes spacecraft, aircraft, structures and more for fractures and fatigue, wear and tear that could pose a risk if not repaired. With data that includes measurements and material composition, the software calculates how a crack could grow and become catastrophic. NASGRO was initially developed to support NASA’s Space Shuttle Program, but is now used by companies around the world to avert danger. Last month, the Space Foundation inducted NASGRO and its developers into the Space Technology Hall of Fame, which honors groundbreaking technologies that began as space programs and have since been adapted to improve the quality of life for all of humanity.
Listen now as SwRI NASGRO developers and Hall of Fame inductees Dr. Craig McClung and Joe Cardinal discuss the world-changing software’s capabilities and that shining moment of the behind-the-scenes technology taking the spotlight.
Episode 54: Targeting Transportation Emissions
April 22 marks Earth Day, an annual call to action to preserve natural resources and protect the planet. On this Earth Day episode, we’re discussing new SwRI technology in development that targets rising greenhouse gas emissions, which cause disruptive changes in Earth’s climate. The transportation sector is a major contributor of carbon emissions. SwRI engineers are developing a potential solution, a membrane that removes and captures carbon dioxide before it escapes into the atmosphere, leaving cleaner air. They envision it will be outfitted on a range of vehicles, from compact cars to ships.
Listen now as SwRI Staff Engineer Dr. Graham Conway discusses going beyond a zero-emissions solution to develop a novel carbon capture membrane, a negative-emissions technology.
Great & informative!
Really interesting interviews. Thanks!