UW News

The latest news from the UW


August 19, 2019

USGS awards $10.4M to ShakeAlert earthquake early warning system in the Pacific Northwest

The U.S. Geological Survey announced $10.4 million in funding to the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network, based at University of Washington, to support the ShakeAlert earthquake early warning system. Some $7.3 million of the two-year funding total will go to the UW.

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‘Hidden’ data exacerbates rural public health inequities

The SHARE-NW project is a five-year effort to identify, gather and visualize data in four Northwest states to help rural communities more effectively address health disparities and achieve health equity.

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Starbucks, United Way, Mary’s Place and Wellspring welcome UW to coalition supporting local unsheltered families

Today local community leaders welcomed University of Washington to a coalition dedicated to supporting unsheltered families across Puget Sound. The University will host three Family Resource Exchanges that will take place on its campuses in Bothell, Seattle and Tacoma, expanding the coalition’s ability to help unsheltered families in the region. This commitment comes shortly after the one-year anniversary of the first exchange in King County last summer.

How ergonomic is your warehouse job? Soon, an app might be able to tell you

Researchers at the UW have used machine learning to develop a new system that can monitor factory and warehouse workers and tell them how ergonomic their jobs are in real time.

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August 16, 2019

ArtsUW Roundup: Creating Alternative Worlds, Bulrusher, Final Week of James Coupe: Exercises in Passivity and more!

In the arts, celebrate the accomplishments of the 2019 Summer Institute in the Arts and Humanities program’s undergraduate researchers in “Creating Alternative Worlds,” attend Bulrusher – an Intiman Theatre production directed by Valerie Curtis-Newton at the Jones Playhouse, drop into the Library for the Fourth Wednesday Concert Series featuring Brian Schappals and more! Creating Alternative…

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August 13, 2019

HUB closed starting at 2 p.m. on Aug. 14 and Sept. 4 for police training activities

The Husky Union Building (HUB) will be closed from 2 to 9 p.m. on Aug. 14 and Sept. 4 for the UW Police Department to conduct training exercises inside the building.

James Webb Space Telescope could begin learning about TRAPPIST-1 atmospheres in a single year, study indicates

New research from astronomers at the UW uses the intriguing TRAPPIST-1 planetary system as a kind of laboratory to model not the planets themselves, but how the coming James Webb Space Telescope might detect and study their atmospheres, on the path toward looking for life beyond Earth.

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Dr. Nancy Allbritton named dean of UW’s College of Engineering

Dr. Nancy Allbritton has been named the next Frank & Julie Jungers Dean of the College of Engineering, University of Washington Provost Mark Richards announced today. Allbritton’s appointment, set to begin Nov. 1, is subject to approval by the UW Board of Regents.

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Air pollution can accelerate lung disease as much as a pack a day of cigarettes

Air pollution—especially ozone air pollution which is increasing with climate change—accelerates the progression of emphysema of the lung, according to a new study led by the University of Washington, Columbia University and the University at Buffalo.

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August 12, 2019

First cells on ancient Earth may have emerged because building blocks of proteins stabilized membranes

Scientists have discovered that the building blocks of proteins can stabilize cell membranes. This finding may explain how the first cells emerged from the primordial soup billions of years ago: The protein building blocks could have stabilized cell membranes against salt and ions that were present in ancient oceans. In addition, membranes may have been a site for these precursor molecules to co-localize, a potential mechanism to explain what brought together the ingredients for life.

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First evidence of human-caused climate change melting the West Antarctic Ice Sheet

A new study by U.S. and U.K. scientists finds that in addition to natural variations in winds that drive warmer water to the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, which last about a decade, there has been a longer-term change in the winds that can be linked with human activities.

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August 9, 2019

Scientists can now control thermal profiles at the nanoscale

Scientists have designed and tested an experimental system that uses a near-infrared laser to actively heat two gold nanorod antennae — metal rods designed and built at the nanoscale — to different temperatures. The nanorods are so close together that they are both electromagnetically and thermally coupled. Yet the team measured temperature differences between the rods as high as 20 degrees Celsius and could change which nanorod was cooler and which was warmer, even though the rods were made of the same material.

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Artificial intelligence could yield more accurate breast cancer diagnoses

Researchers at UW and UCLA have developed an artificial intelligence system that could help pathologists read biopsies more accurately, and lead to better detection and diagnosis of breast cancer.

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August 8, 2019

UW, UC San Diego, UC Berkeley receive $5M NSF award to simplify researcher access to public clouds

The National Science Foundation has awarded a five-year, $5 million grant to the University of California, San Diego, the University of Washington and the University of California, Berkeley to develop CloudBank, a suite of managed services to simplify public cloud access for computer science research and education.

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Study shows gun shops can aid in preventing suicides

Firearm retailers throughout Washington are willing to learn about suicide prevention but are reluctant to talk to customers about mental health issues, according to a new study by Forefront Suicide Prevention at the University of Washington.

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More than 100 years of Arctic sea ice volume reconstructed with help from historic ships’ logbooks

A new study provides a 110-year record of the total volume of Arctic sea ice, using early U.S. ships’ voyages to verify the earlier part of the record. The longer record puts the recent loss into perspective.

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August 6, 2019

How the Pacific Ocean influences long-term drought in the Southwestern U.S.

Analyzing the full life cycle of long-term droughts and how they relate to El Niño and La Niña conditions in the Pacific Ocean could eventually lead to better prediction of damaging, multiyear droughts in the Southwestern U.S.

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August 2, 2019

UW selects artists and tops out Population Health Building

The University of Washington today announced the topping out of the new $230 million Population Health Building. The UW also has selected two artists whose work will help tell the story of the education and research that will take place within the new facility.

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August 1, 2019

UW Division of Design faculty, Seattle Children’s physicians collaborate on more effective anesthesia cart organization

In recent years, physicians at Seattle Children’s Hospital have worked with UW faculty members in design to come up with a better, safer, more reliable way to order and use drugs on an operating room’s anesthesia cart.

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ArtsUW Roundup: The American Superhero, 500 Years of Prints, and more

In the arts, visit an exhibition of portraits and stories that celebrates differences, highlights our commonalities, and embraces what makes us each uniquely American, explore a collection of prints that date back to the 1490s, and more! Exhibition | The American Superhero July 25 – October 4 | UW Tower Mezzanine Lounge There is a…

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July 30, 2019

UW study: House move during early pregnancy linked to heightened premature birth risk

Moving to a new residence during the first three months of pregnancy is linked to a heightened risk of premature birth and low birthweight, as well as a slightly higher risk of a smaller-than-expected-size baby, according to new research from the University of Washington published online today in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health.

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Soundbites: UW hosts student robotics ‘moon landing’ challenge

A robotics challenge July 20th at the UW featured twenty-eight teams of middle and high schoolers from Forks to Walla Walla and from Bellingham to Olympia. The event marked a half-century since the Apollo 11 mission landed on the moon and two U.S. astronauts, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin, walked its surface.

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Video: UW hosts student robotics ‘moon landing’ challenge

A robotics challenge July 20th at the UW featured twenty-eight teams of middle and high schoolers from Forks to Walla Walla and from Bellingham to Olympia. The event marked a half-century since the Apollo 11 mission landed on the moon and two U.S. astronauts, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin, walked its surface.

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July 29, 2019

Medicaid expansion may prevent child neglect, UW study shows

More than 4 million reports of child maltreatment involving about 7.5 million children were made in 2017 to Child Protective Services. While much work has been done to reduce these high rates of child abuse and neglect in the United States, few programs have been consistently effective.

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Stressed at school? Art therapy reduces teenage girls’ headaches

In a pilot study led by the UW, researchers explored art-based mindfulness activities that schools could use to reduce headaches, a common side effect of stress in adolescent girls. After three weeks of twice-weekly mindfulness and art therapy sessions, eight teenage girls reported experiencing significantly fewer headaches.

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July 26, 2019

UW moves up to No. 5 on Kiplinger’s list of ‘best value’ public universities

The University of Washington is now fifth on Kiplinger’s list of best values among U.S. public universities, according to a new ranking published this week. Last year, the UW placed No. 7.

July 25, 2019

Decades after a grade-school program to promote social development, adults report healthier, more successful lives

University of Washington researchers have found that that “good life” in adulthood can start in grade school, by teaching parents and teachers to build stronger bonds with their children, and to help children form greater attachments to family and school.

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July 24, 2019

How to consider nature’s impact on mental health in city plans

An international team led by the UW and Stanford has created a framework for how city planners and municipalities around the world can start to measure the mental health benefits of nature and incorporate those into plans and policies for cities and their residents.

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July 23, 2019

What motivates people to join — and stick with — citizen science projects?

After more than 20 years, the UW’s Coastal Observation and Seabird Survey Team, or COASST, is itself the subject of scientific study. Social scientists are studying the program’s success to extract lessons for all citizen science efforts.

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July 22, 2019

University of Washington to create UW Center for an Informed Public with $5 million investment from Knight Foundation

The University of Washington today announced a $5 million investment from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation to create the UW Center for an Informed Public, led by an interdisciplinary group whose mission is to resist strategic misinformation, promote an informed society, and strengthen democratic discourse. The Center is also funded by a $600,000 award from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.

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July 19, 2019

Offspring of pregnant women exposed to high level of pollutants may have lower IQs

A new study found that pregnant women exposed to higher levels of air pollutants had children with lower IQs, compared to the children of women exposed to lower levels. 

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July 18, 2019

François Baneyx named director of UW’s CoMotion and Interim Vice Provost for Innovation

François Baneyx has been named the new director of CoMotion and Interim Vice Provost of Innovation at the University of Washington, Provost Mark Richards announced today. Baneyx fills a position formerly held by Vikram Jandhyala, who died in March. “François is a respected researcher, teacher and innovator with connections throughout academia and industry, as well…

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Scientists discover how the mosquito brain integrates diverse sensory cues to locate a host to bite

A team, led by researchers at the University of Washington, has discovered how the female mosquito brain integrates visual and olfactory signals to identify, track and hone in on a potential host for her next blood meal: After the mosquito’s olfactory system detects certain chemical cues, the mosquito uses her visual system to scan her surroundings for certain shapes and fly toward them, presumably associating those shapes with potential hosts.

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July 17, 2019

Video: ‘Pickled’ sharks from the UW Burke Museum fish collection

The Burke Museum at the University of Washington has North America’s largest fish collection that includes a number of sharks, including many species that live in Pacific Northwest waters.

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UW steady at No. 28 in the world, fourth among U.S. public institutions; No. 1 on CNBC US public colleges that pay off the most

The University of Washington was recognized this week for its global impact in teaching and research, as well as for its value to graduates compared to cost of attendance.

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UW hosts student robotics challenge Friday to mark 50th anniversary of Apollo 11 moon landing

This Friday, teams of 5th- through 12th-grade students from across Washington state will complete a challenge in Kane Hall to mimic the 1969 Apollo moon landing, using drones and Lego robots.

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First-ever visualizations of electrical gating effects on electronic structure could lead to longer-lasting devices

Scientists have visualized the electronic structure in a microelectronic device for the first time, opening up opportunities for finely tuned, high-performance electronic devices. Physicists from the University of Washington and the University of Warwick developed a technique to measure the energy and momentum of electrons in operating microelectronic devices made of atomically thin — so-called 2D — materials.

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Magdalena Balazinska named director of UW’s Paul G. Allen School of Computer Science & Engineering

Magdalena Balazinska has been named the new director of the Paul G. Allen School of Computer Science & Engineering. The appointment is effective Jan. 1, 2020, and is subject to approval by the UW Board of Regents.

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July 16, 2019

8 UW professors elected to the Washington State Academy of Sciences in 2019

Eight scientists and engineers from the University of Washington have been elected this year to the Washington State Academy of Sciences.

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ArtsUW Roundup: writing workshop, exhibition opening, festival:festival, and more

In the arts, stop by the Allen Library North Lobby for a free lunchtime concert with UW Voice students, take a writing workshop hosted by the Henry Art Gallery and Hugo House, stop by James Coupe’s exhibition at the Jacob Lawrence Gallery, partake in a free two-day arts festival – festival:festival – that presents and…

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