The Science of Sustainability

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QUEST Lab: Engineering Fire

QUEST Lab: Engineering Fire

In a dark lab at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, engineers and mathematicians are developing new burners and studying different flames in hopes of better understanding the power of fire and how to make the most efficient flame possible.

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Induced Seismicity: Man-Made Earthquakes

Induced Seismicity: Man-Made Earthquakes

In California, more renewable energy comes from geothermal energy than solar and wind, combined. Today, a new technology known as Enhanced Geothermal Systems has the potential to extract even more heat and consequently energy to power steam turbines, but it’s not without challenges.

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QUEST Lab: The Shaking Table at UC Berkeley

QUEST Lab: The Shaking Table at UC Berkeley

Khalid Mosalam and his colleagues at the Pacific Earthquake Engineering Research Center's Shaking Table Laboratory are helping to make communities safer in an earthquake.

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Megathrust Earthquakes

Megathrust Earthquakes

Experts warn that an offshore quake powerful enough to kill thousands and discharge a tsunami could hit the West Coast any time. QUEST Northwest talks with geologists and seismologists about cutting-edge research in earthquake prediction, and what it would look like if the next “Big One" hits close to home.

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Airborne Wind Energy

Airborne Wind Energy

On the windswept tarmac of the former Alameda Naval Air Station, an inventive group of scientists and engineers are test-flying a kite-like tethered wing that may someday help revolutionize clean-energy. QUEST explores the potential of wind energy and new airborne wind turbines designed to harness the stronger and more consistent winds found at higher altitudes.

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Your Videos on QUEST: Dan Griffin of GG Films

Your Videos on QUEST: Dan Griffin of GG Films

"Ocean Babies on Acid" focuses on an experiment that Stephen Palumbi and UC Davis marine biologist Eric Sanford are doing to study the effects of ocean acidification on sea urchin larvae off the California and Oregon coasts.

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Web Extra: Orca Sounds vs. Underwater Noise

Web Extra: Orca Sounds vs. Underwater Noise

When listening for orca whales underwater, researchers distinguish their sounds from other noises such as boats, ships, and other sea animals with hydrophones. Learn how these instruments work in this web extra from QUEST Northwest.

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Sidelined: Sports Concussions

Sidelined: Sports Concussions

Studying the effects of a concussion at its source, inside the brain, is no easy feat. Says Dr. Geoffrey Manley, Chief of Neurosurgery at San Francisco General Hospital, "What we’re dealing with is one of the most complicated injuries in the most complicated organ in the body."

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Your Photos on QUEST: Bryant Austin

Your Photos on QUEST: Bryant Austin

Scotts Valley photographer Bryant Austin swims eye-to-eye with the world's largest animals in order to bring attention to the plight of these intelligent ocean denizens.

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Science on the SPOT: Dark Matter: Inside the Compost Cycle

Science on the SPOT: Dark Matter: Inside the Compost Cycle

How does San Francisco’s 600 tons of compostable waste become a nutrient-rich material that improves the quality of our local wines? Agronomist Bob Shaffer, Northern California’s “compost guy,” takes QUEST into the composting process.

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Science on the SPOT: Salt Creek Tiger Beetles

Science on the SPOT: Salt Creek Tiger Beetles

The Salt Creek tiger beetle is one of the most endangered species in the United States, with only 200 to 500 beetles left. They're found only in a small saline wetland area just north of Lincoln, Nebraska.

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Science on the SPOT: Northern Pacific Rattlesnake Tracker

Science on the SPOT: Northern Pacific Rattlesnake Tracker

Katie Colbert, a naturalist at the Sunol-Ohlone Regional Wilderness, shares with us how she tracked dozens of Northern Pacific rattlesnakes and what surprised her about their movements and behaviors.

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Science on the SPOT: Rendezvous With Horseshoe Crabs

Science on the SPOT: Rendezvous With Horseshoe Crabs

Watch as thousands of prehistoric horseshoe crabs take over a beach in Delaware.

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Science on the SPOT: Bats Beneath Us

Science on the SPOT: Bats Beneath Us

Every summer, 250,000 bats take up residence under a freeway bridge in California's Central Valley. And each night, they exit the bridge in a stunning ribbon-like formation.

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Science on the SPOT: Green Eggs By The Gram – Sustainable Caviar

Science on the SPOT: Green Eggs By The Gram – Sustainable Caviar

Once an exotic product associated with royalty and overfishing, caviar is now being farmed sustainably right here in California.

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Millie Hughes-Fulford: Scientist in Space

Millie Hughes-Fulford: Scientist in Space

As the space shuttle program comes to an end, QUEST profiles Marin County former astronaut Millie Hughes-Fulford.

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Why I Do Science: Dan Costa

Why I Do Science: Dan Costa

One of the great things about my job is to be able to talk to some of the world's greatest and most charismatic scientists, like Professor Dan Costa of UC Santa Cruz.

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Science on the SPOT: Sound Waves – Listening to Orcas

Science on the SPOT: Sound Waves – Listening to Orcas

They are an icon of the Pacific Northwest, stirring a mix of fascination, awe and affection. Thousands of people come to the San Juan Islands in Puget Sound just to catch a glimpse of the Southern Resident orcas that call these waters home.

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Web Extra: How Hummingbird Got Fire

Web Extra: How Hummingbird Got Fire

Chariman of the Amah-Mutsun Ohlone tribal band, Valentin Lopez, reads the legend of how Hummingbird got fire from the Badger People.

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Cool Critters: The Gray Fox

Cool Critters: The Gray Fox

QUEST visits with a rescued North American Gray Fox at the Lindsay Wildlife Museum in Walnut Creek. This elusive species is native to the Bay Area and happens to be the only member of the dog family who can climb trees.

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