Lyra Fontaine

Articles

Task force weighs medical marijuana law

The task force charged with ensuring a smooth rollout of Minnesota’s medical marijuana law began its duties last week. The 23-member task force — which comprises elected and public safety officials, health care experts from the University of Minnesota and patients who might use the drug — met for the first time Thursday to review the law and to take questions on its upcoming implementation.


University celebrates completion of world-class NOvA detector

A newly unveiled 14,000-ton neutrino detector built in part by hundreds of University of Minnesota students and staff is searching a kilometers-wide beam of particles for clues about the beginning of the universe. In northern Minnesota, the University celebrated on Thursday the completion of its NOvA Far Detector, one of the world’s largest plastic structures. Over the span of four years, it was partially assembled in an industrial space near campus by 700 University students across two dozen different majors.


University combats food supply issues with MnDRIVE

With government dollars and partnerships with industry in tow, the University of Minnesota’s research powerhouse is turning its gaze to addressing global food security, safety and sustainability. In a state home to many food companies and more than 26 million acres of farmland, the Legislature allocated $3 million in Minnesota’s Discovery, Research and InnoVation Economy, or MnDRIVE, funding to 17 University projects earlier this month, as part of the school’s global food ventures initiative.


University celebrates completion of world-class NOvA detector

A newly unveiled 14,000-ton neutrino detector built in part by hundreds of University of Minnesota students and staff is searching a kilometers-wide beam of particles for clues about the beginning of the universe. In northern Minnesota, the University celebrated on Thursday the completion of its NOvA Far Detector, one of the world’s largest plastic structures. Over the span of four years, it was partially assembled in an industrial space near campus by 700 University students across two dozen different majors.


First Target mini-store set to open doors Wednesday

In the University of Minnesota area’s dinkiest neighborhood, Target is set to debut its smallest store in company history. On Wednesday, the Minneapolis-based retail company will open for a soft open of its first TargetExpress — a scaled-down, 20,000-square-foot space at the base of The Marshall apartments on 14th Avenue Southeast and Fifth Street Southeast. On Sunday it will host a grand opening of the store. “This is our backyard; it’s very close to headquarters,” said Karl Anderson, the Dinkytown store’s team leader.


Private water wells soaking up fertilizers, University research says

From 2007 to 2012, more than a quarter of southeastern Minnesota’s grassland disappeared as fertilized farmland expanded — a shift in land use that’s contaminating the region’s private drinking water wells. The switch from grass to crops — a trend across the Midwest that’s spurred by rising crop prices — could lead to a 45 percent increase in the number of wells in the region contaminated with potentially dangerous nitrate, according to recently published University of Minnesota research.


At 81, professor still pioneers research

Forty years after his expeditions to Antarctica, Akhouri Sinha discovered he had made a more permanent mark on the continent than he knew. Sinha, a University of Minnesota adjunct genetics, cell biology and development professor and a research scientist at the Minneapolis Veterans Affairs Medical Center, spent 22 weeks in Antarctica during the early 1970s as part of the first team of explorers to catalog vital data on the animal population there.


Solar car charged up for cross-country race

On any given race day, a team of University of Minnesota engineering students will race on two hours’ worth of battery charge. After that, they’ll be at the sun’s mercy. Starting Monday, about 17 engineering students will put their 10th-generation solar car, Centaurus III, to the test when they depart for the American Solar Challenge, an eight-day race of more than 1,700 miles from Austin, Texas, to Minneapolis.


U gets funding boost for bee research

Midsummer sunrays beamed on Monday as University of Minnesota researchers let a swarm of buzzing honeybees loose, allowing them to forage nearby fields before returning to the experiment’s site on the St. Paul campus. Out of the hundreds of bees, researchers plucked a handful who carried a particular resin that could potentially boost the insect’s immunity. As one of the many bee experiments aiming to secure the species’ survival, the researchers took the sample population back to the University’s Bee Lab for testing.


U project could use farming to turn down urban heat

Ongoing University of Minnesota research using 200 temperature sensors placed around the Twin Cities has found that Minneapolis and St. Paul have about a 3-degree temperature difference when compared to surrounding areas. This phenomenon of urban areas having higher average temperatures than their rural neighbors is known as the urban heat island effect, which is caused by structures like roads and buildings replacing what used to be permeable vegetation, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.