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Virtual reality training tool pits emergency rescue teams against computerized terrorist attack
Sandia computer scientists have combined seven years of virtual reality research into BioSimMER, a VR application that immerses first responders in a 3-D computer-simulated setting -- a small airport in which a biological warfare agent has been dispersed following a terrorist bombing. Simulated casualties with a variety of symptoms are found throughout the airport. BioSimMER can help emergency personnel make better decisions if ever they are called on to respond in a real attack. (1999-09-23)

Story tips from the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory, December 2004
This issue include: Cool under pressure, Better distributed energy, Stellar nova simulations and Cleaner, cheaper coal power. (2004-12-01)

Building a better model of human-automation interaction
Automation system designers and human factors researchers can now rely on a new taxonomy to guide them in how intuitive cognition fits into the current model of human-automation interaction. (2017-02-06)

Stanford's 'autonomous' helicopters teach themselves to fly
Stanford computer scientists have developed an artificial intelligence system that enables robotic helicopters to teach themselves to fly difficult stunts by watching other helicopters. The result is an autonomous helicopter than can perform a complete airshow of complex tricks on its own. The airshow is an important demonstration of (2008-09-02)

Noise and carbon monoxide exposure increases hearing loss according to Université de Montréal study
Researchers have gathered evidence which shows that combined chronic exposure to noise and carbon monoxide in the workplace induces hearing loss. Adriana Lacerda, researcher at the École d'orthophonie et d'audiologie of the Université de Montréal, presents her findings at the annual meeting of the Acoustical Society of America in Vancouver on Wednesday. Those findings are the result of a study conducted with over 8,600 workers exposed to both noise and carbon monoxide in the workplace. (2005-05-16)

Time is ripe for fire detection satellite, say UC Berkeley scientists
Wildfire detection today is much like it was 200 years ago, relying primarily on humans to spot smoke plumes or flames. UC Berkeley experts in fires, satellites and remote sensing now say that the technology is ripe for a fire-spotting satellite that could snap images of the US West every few seconds to detect fires before they spread with few false alarms. The cost would be a fraction of the country's annual fire-fighting budget. (2013-10-21)

A promising step forward toward a new treatment against cancer
The work of UCL researchers, published on April 22 in the prestigious scientific magazine Science Translational Medicine, allows taking into consideration new methods of immunotherapy against cancer, which could lead to an improvement of the efficiency of the current treatment methods. (2015-04-22)

Personal cooling units on the horizon
Firefighters entering burning buildings, athletes competing in the broiling sun and workers in foundries may eventually be able to carry their own, lightweight cooling units with them, thanks to a nanowire array that cools, according to Penn State materials researchers. (2016-04-28)

Exposure to cold temperatures can help boost weight loss
Regular exposure to mild cold may be a healthy and sustainable way to help people lose weight, according to researchers writing in the Cell Press publication Trends in Endocrinology & Metabolism on Jan. 22nd. On the flip side, that means our warm and cozy homes and offices might be partly responsible for our expanding waistlines. (2014-01-22)

Fires continue in San Diego County, Calif.
Seven fires are still burning in San Diego County, Calif. (2014-05-16)

Sound of music: How melodic alarms could reduce morning grogginess
New research suggests melodic alarms could improve alertness, with harsh alarm tones linked to increased levels of morning grogginess. (2020-02-03)

Untimely immune cell clocks may contribute to obesity and diabetes in shift workers
About 15 million Americans don't have a typical nine-to-five workday, and many of these -- nurses, firefighters and flight attendants, among many other professions -- may see their schedule change drastically one week to the next. As a result, these shift workers' biological clocks, which keep track of the time of day, cannot keep accurate time, potentially making the negative effects of a high fat diet on metabolic disorders even more pronounced, according to new research. (2018-02-06)

University of Minnesota and start-up to develop antidote to cyanide poisoning
Cyanide poisoning is often fatal and typically affects victims of industrial accidents, terrorist attacks, or structural fires. Based on research conducted at the Center for Drug Design at the University of Minnesota, start-up Vytacera Pharma Inc. will develop and market Sulfanegen, a treatment for cyanide poisoning. (2012-02-09)

Post-traumatic stress risk to police officers lower than previously thought
Although police officers are at a high risk of experiencing traumatic events (TE) in their work, they are no more likely than the general population to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). (2011-11-22)

NC State to develop next generation HazMat boots
The rubber boots that emergency personnel wear when responding to situations where hazardous materials are present may be functional, but they're not very comfortable. New research coming out of North Carolina State University hopes to provide a next generation HazMat boot that meets both criteria. (2010-05-27)

For neurons to work as a team, it helps to have a beat
When it comes to conducting complex tasks, it turns out that the brain needs rhythm, according to UC Berkeley researchers. Neuroscientists have found that cortical rhythms, or oscillations, can effectively rally groups of neurons in widely dispersed regions of the brain to engage in coordinated activity, much like a conductor will summon up various sections of an orchestra in a symphony. (2010-09-20)

U of M researchers discover fast-acting cyanide antidote
University of Minnesota Center for Drug Design and Minneapolis VA Medical Center researchers have discovered a new fast-acting antidote to cyanide poisoning. The antidote has potential to save lives of those who are exposed to the chemical -- namely firefighters, industrial workers and victims of terrorist attacks. (2007-12-27)

New clues help explain why PFAS chemicals resist remediation
Chemicals used in firefighting foam and other products can last for decades in the environment, resisting efforts to remove them. New research suggest why that happens and new avenues for remediation. (2021-01-19)

Landsat 5 satellite helps emergency managers fight largest fire in Arizona history
The largest fire in the history of the state of Arizona continues to burn and emergency managers and responders are using satellite data from a variety of instruments to plan their firefighting containment strategies and mitigation efforts once the fires are out. (2011-06-16)

Sex sells: how masculinity is used as currency to buy sperm donors' time
Sperm banks in the United Kingdom and Australia use images and phrases associated with masculinity to attract donors because laws prohibit them from paying for sperm. (2019-05-20)

RIT partners with leader in remote sensing to enhance homeland security
Leica Geosystems, a world wide leader in geospacial imaging, has recently chosen the Carlson Center for Imaging Science at Rochester Institute of Technology to serve as a Center of Excellence in Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing. The award includes a substantial donation of software and technical support. (2005-10-27)

MSU leads first study of resiliency on the battlefield
In the first combat-zone study of its kind, a research team led by Michigan State University found that soldiers with a positive outlook in the most traumatic situations were less likely to suffer health problems such as anxiety and depression. (2011-01-04)

Emergency workers will respond
Worries that first responders will shirk duties in a disaster are overblown, but they do need assistance with family matters, University of Delaware study shows. (2011-08-18)

Robots on reins could be the 'eyes' of firefighters
Firefighters moving through smoke-filled buildings could save vital seconds and find it easier to identify objects and obstacles, thanks to revolutionary reins that enable robots to act like guide dogs. The small mobile robot -- equipped with tactile sensors -- would lead the way, with the firefighter following a meter or so behind holding a rein. (2015-03-25)

Police and firefighters at higher risk for mental disorders following traumatic events
New research suggests that exposure to diverse types of traumatic events among protective services workers is a risk factor for new onset of psychopathology and alcohol use disorders. (2013-02-26)

Researchers develop wearable, low-cost sensor to measure skin hydration
Researchers have developed a wearable, wireless sensor that can monitor a person's skin hydration to detect dehydration before it poses a health problem. The device is lightweight, flexible and stretchable and has already been incorporated into prototype devices that can be worn on the wrist or as a chest patch. (2017-01-30)

New model quantifies communities' vulnerability to the spread of fire
Disaster-mitigation experts in Colorado State University's Walter Scott, Jr. College of Engineering wanted to bring attention to the complexity of the so-called wildland-urban interface of fires. They've developed a model that attempts to quantify the vulnerability of a community of homes to the spread of a fire. They hope their model could add to the strategic toolbox that protects lives and livelihoods from destructive fires. (2018-07-12)

OU engineering researcher reshapes military communications
Jessica Ruyle, electrical and computer engineering professor in the University of Oklahoma College of Engineering, is improving communication abilities for soldiers in the field by literally reshaping how they transmit communications. With a nearly $500,000 grant from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, Ruyle will design and develop a thin, flat antenna that can be placed conformably on anything from vehicles to uniforms - making the antennas both less conspicuous and more rugged for field use. (2015-03-23)

Fires in northern Washington state
The Pacific Northwest has been inundated with wildfires most stemming from lightning strikes during summer storms. (2014-08-12)

Stress faced by emergency call handlers damaging to long term health
The stress experienced by emergency call handlers negatively impacts on their long term psychological well being, a new report in the journal PeerJ reports. (2017-11-14)

Study identifies better blood glucose monitor for burn care
Glucose monitoring systems with an autocorrect feature that can detect red blood cells (hematocrit), vitamin C and other common interferents in burn patients' blood are better for monitoring care, a pilot study conducted by UC Davis researchers at the School of Medicine and College of Engineering has found. (2013-08-29)

Disaster Charter brings satellites to bear on Romanian flooding
Teams responding to devastating flooding in Romania received assistance from orbit, with satellite images and maps of affected areas provided in near-real time following activation of the International Charter on Space and Major Disasters. (2005-08-01)

Cardiac arrests in high-rise buildings: Low survival rates above 3rd floor
Residents of high-rise buildings had better survival rates from cardiac arrests if they lived on the first few floors, and survival was negligible for people living above the 16th floor, according to a study published in CMAJ (Canadian Medical Association Journal). (2016-01-18)

Sleep deprivation negatively affects split-second decision making, study shows
Sleep deprivation adversely affects automatic, accurate responses and can lead to potentially devastating errors, a finding of particular concern among firefighters, police officers, soldiers and others who work in a sleep-deprived state, University of Texas at Austin researchers say. (2009-11-16)

NIST improves performance, capabilities of its computer fire modeling tools
NIST scientists and engineers recently enhanced the capabilities of their computer fire modeling software, a powerful suite of tools used worldwide in research, arson investigations, firefighter training, and development of fire-protection designs and standards. (2014-05-22)

Researchers clarify the identity of brain stem cells
The human nervous system is a complex structure that sends electrical signals from the brain to the rest of the body, enabling us to move and think. Unfortunately, when brain cells are damaged by trauma or disease they don't automatically regenerate. This can lead to permanent disability. (2018-05-04)

Trial targets deadly lung cancer
With more than 650 Australians diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma last year, Flinders University is leading new research to discover alternatives to chemotherapy and even prevent deaths by early detection in future. One novel approach, using natural therapeutic benefits of curcumin, a key component of the spice turmeric, will be put to the test in a clinical trial in 2021 as part of world-leading research at Flinders University. (2020-10-30)

Water replaces toxins: Green production of plastics
A new way to synthesize polymers, called hydrothermal synthesis, can be used to produce important high-performance materials in a way which is much better for the environment. Dangerous toxins which usually have to be used to produce theses polymers can be substituted by water. (2020-04-21)

9/11 has important lessons for mental health workers
While New York's firefighters and police officers have been widely honored for their heroism in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the city's mental health professionals waged a quieter, but in some ways equally heroic effort - to organize a large-scale response to help local residents cope with severe stress and grief. (2002-09-09)

Emergency resuscitation device increases cardiac arrest survival rate, study reports
When paramedics resuscitated cardiac arrest patients with a new type of breathing tube, their patients were more likely to survive, according to a University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston-led study in today's JAMA. (2018-08-28)

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