Anderson receives grant to
study lava flows on Mars - top
Dr. Steve Anderson, professor of geology and planetary science at
Black Hills State University, recently received a three-year grant that
will total more than $160,000 from the National Aeronautics and Space
Administration (NASA) to study lava flows on Mars.
The research, titled “Mars Lava Flow Surface Morphology: An Avenue
for Answering Fundamental Questions Regarding the Rates and Styles of
Volcanism,” focuses on the study of lava flow surfaces and what they can
tell scientists about the eruptions that produced them. Anderson is
serving as the principal investigator on the grant and with assistant by
several colleagues including Dr. Mike Ramsey, University of Pittsburgh;
Dr. Ellen Stofan, Proxemy Research; Dr. Sue Smrekar, Jet Propulsion
Laboratory; and Dr. Jon Fink, Arizona State University.
The researchers will refine existing models to better utilize the
wealth of high-resolution data now available for flow surfaces on Mars.
Their research will promote advances in assessing volcanic regions,
ranging from interpretations of individual lava flows to regional and
global interpretations of the rates and styles of volcanism evident in
high-resolution mission data.
“Because primary lava surfaces pose significant danger, this work is
vitally important for assessing volcanic areas on Mars through remotely
sensed data,” Anderson said.
The proposed work for this project involves a series of carbowax
experiments, field and modeling efforts to improve knowledge of the four
key parameters that influence morphology of lava flows: underlying
topography, composition, effusion rate and internal flow pathways.
Anderson says the research will provide an improved understanding of
lava flow emplacement over variable terrians, which has implications for
how some Martian lava flows may have been emplaced.
Anderson is excited about the grant and notes, that although he has
been involved in the Mars program for several years now, this is the
first one for which he will serve as principal investigator.
“This research should open up some new opportunities as additional
data are returned from the various missions that are currently focusing
on Mars,” Anderson said.
He noted that even though much attention at NASA is focused on
returning an astronaut to the Moon as a stepping stone for an eventual
manned space flight to Mars, fundamental research on the red planet
continues as well.
“Several current missions, including the Mars Global Surveyor Orbiter
and two rovers, are providing an unprecedented opportunity to study
another planetary body, and perhaps learn something about our own planet
in the process,” Anderson said.
The professor said he’s often asked “why should we spend the time and
money to study a different planet?” His usual reply is that it’s not all
that different than studying people.
“You can learn a lot about people by studying one person, but you
certainly can’t learn everything there is to know about people by just
studying just one person. “It’s the same with planets. We can learn a
lot about Earth by studying Earth, but we can learn a lot more about our
home by looking at it as part of a group, paying attention to the
differences we find among the planets and trying to learn why those
variations exist,” Anderson said.
He noted that the technological spin offs from these types of
missions filter down to technology companies and become incorporated
into new products that makes business better and make lives a bit
Anderson explained that there are three parts to the proposed
research. The first part is understanding how the surface over which a
lava flow travels affects its appearance.
“We really need to understand how underlying topography influences
lava flow appearance so that we can eliminate it as an unknown variable
and focus on those factors unique to Mars that affect lava flow
surfaces,” Anderson said. “This task will involve some high-precision
GPS and surveying work on active lava flows.”
Anderson plans to go to Hawaii in February to construct
high-precision maps of old lava flow surfaces, then re-shoot the
topography at equally-spaced time intervals as new lava flows cover the
“We’ll then create a final topographic map of the flow surface and
use some statistical tools to look at relationships between pre- and
post-eruption topography. We’ll also do several lava flow simulation
experiments using polyethylene glycol wax extruded over different types
of flow surfaces to look at these processes in a more controlled
setting,” Anderson said.
The second stage of the research involves a study of how the interior
structure of a lava flow affects its surface appearance. Again, the
researchers will conduct simulations with wax and look at active
Hawaiian lava flows with a thermal infrared camera to get an idea of
where lava is traveling beneath the black surface crusts.
According to Anderson the final stage of the research focuses on the
role of chemical composition on the surface appearance of lava flows.
“Lavas that have a relatively high percentage of silica are far more
viscous and the increased viscosity affects the surfaces of lava flows
on Earth in a profound manner,” Anderson said. “However, we don’t know
how these more silica-rich lavas will behave under Martian conditions,
and therefore have designed a number of simulation experiments and
mathematical models that should enable us to understand what might
happen on a different planet.”
He said the goal of this work is to obtain a better fundamental
understanding of how to interpret geologic surfaces on Mars. Several
large areas of Mars are dominated by volcanoes including the largest
volcano in the solar system, Olympus Mons, which rises over 60,000 feet
and covers an area larger than the state of Colorado.
Smith will be featured in
Public Television segment - top
Black Hills State University professor Brian Smith,
associate professor of biology at BHSU, will be featured on an upcoming
“Dakota Life” segment on South Dakota Public Broadcasting.
The show, titled Black Hills Reptiles, will air
Feb. 3 at 7 p.m. on the local public television channel.
Smith, along with several current and former students including
Laurelin R. Cottingham, who helped write the final report on this work,
as well as Jodi Massie and Ben Blake, were interviewed about a reptile
and amphibian survey conducted in the Black Hills last summer.
Smith is an expert in reptiles and amphibians and has worked
extensively in tropical biology, including fieldwork in the Philippine
Islands, the Amazonian lowlands of Peru, the Pacific island of Guam, and
tropical lowland areas in Costa Rica and Guatemala. Several BHSU
students have accompanied Smith on research trips to the Caribbean. His
research interests include tropical biology, conservation biology, and
herpetology. At BHSU, he teaches conservation biology, ecology and
Smith received a bachelor’s of science degree in
zoology from Washington State University in 1980, a master’s degree in
zoology from Louisiana State University in 1985, and a Ph.D. in
quantitative biology from the University of Texas at Arlington in 1996.
He joined the BHSU faculty in 1997.
BHSU faculty and friends
plan jazz concert - top
Christopher Hahn (left), Randall Royer, and Janeen Larsen will perform a
variety of songs during the faculty jazz concert this Sunday. They will
be joined by community members Dick Rausis, Terry Rathbun, John Kelly
and Nick Brandriet.
Faculty and friends of Black Hills State University will hold a jazz
concert Sunday, Jan. 30 at 2:30 p.m. in the recital hall in Clare and
Josef Meier Hall.
The concert will feature BHSU music faculty members Mr. Christopher
Hahn, trumpet; Dr. Randall Royer, guitar and bass; and Dr. Janeen
Larsen, piano. Joining them will be Mr. Dick Rausis, guitar; Mr. Terry
Rathbun, drums; Mr. John Kelly, keyboard; and Mr. Nick Brandriet,
The ensemble will perform a variety of songs in several combinations:
as a sextet, a quartet, a trio, and several duos (piano/piano,
guitar/piano, trumpet/guitar, guitar/guitar). Jazz styles ranging from
blues to swing to bebop to fusion will be featured.
The concert is open to the public at no charge; however, scholarship
donations will be accepted at the door. For more information call Larsen
at 642-6241 or email
South Dakota teachers invited
to participate in spring 2005 Stock Market Game -
South Dakota high school, middle school and elementary
teachers are invited to participate in the spring 2005 South Dakota
Stock Market Game (SDSMG) according to Don Altmyer, SDSMG coordinator
and director for the Center for Economic Education at Black Hills State
“Teachers can use the Stock Market Game to motivate
students to learn in classes such as social science, math, business,
computers, accounting, personal finance, language arts and gifted
studies,” Altmyer said. “All course content materials conform to
national standards in economics, mathematics and business.”
The SDSMG is an innovative education tool that
motivates students and supports teachers in building lifelong learning
skills, and research has shown that there is no better way to teach the
importance of savings and investing. The SDSMG is the only stock market
simulation program endorsed by the South Dakota Council on Economic
Education. Since 1977, more than 8 million students, from all 50 states,
have participated in the program.
The SDSMG offers a vast library of learning materials
correlated to national voluntary educational standards in math, business
education and economics. Many teachers have incorporated the program
into classes from fourth grade to college. According to Altmyer,
teachers have discovered that the SDSMG actually boosts attendance and
reduces dropout rates, and students who participate gain confidence and
build self-esteem while having fun learning as they see how their
classroom lessons apply to the real world.
Each team of three to four students begins with
$100,000 in hypothetical “cyber dollars” and performs on-line research
and stock trading. They work together practicing leadership,
organization, negotiation and cooperation. In building their portfolio
of stocks, students make decisions based upon what they have learned. To
determine why certain stocks or the broader market performs, they need
to understand how the economy works. To calculate the return on
investment in their portfolio, they must apply conceptual math skills.
The teams with the highest-valued portfolios at the
end of the 10-week trading period receive prizes and awards. Student
team divisions include elementary/junior high (fourth through eighth
grades), high school and college.
The team registration fee of $10 includes all teacher
materials, student team materials and support materials including
newsletters with information on the stock market and a variety of
business and economic topics to stimulate student discussion in the
classroom. Teachers sponsoring eight or more teams receive a free
eight-week subscription to the Wall Street Journal delivered to the
classroom for students to read current news events about particular
companies and industries.
The spring 2005 SDSMG begins Monday, Feb. 14;
registrations are due Friday, Feb. 11. A free workshop will be held on
the BHSU campus Feb. 10 at 8 a.m. in Meier Hall Room 205.
Sponsors for the South Dakota Stock Market Game are
the Center for Economic Education at Black Hills State University, the
Central States Securities Industries Association and the South Dakota
Council on Economic Education.
To participate in the spring 2005 SDSMG, register at
www.smgww.org by clicking on the
“Register Now” link and following the prompts.
Contact Altmyer at 642-6266 or
DonAltmyer@bhsu.edu with any
questions or concerns. More information is also available at
Black Hills State
University releases dean's list -
The academic affairs office at Black Hills State
University has released the dean’s list for the fall 2004 semester. A
total of 394 students were named to the dean’s list. Students must
maintain a grade point average of 3.5 or above while taking at least 12
credit hours to be named to the dean’s list. Students are listed by
hometown or current place of residence.
BHSU seeks nominations for
alumni awards - top
The Black Hills State University Alumni Association is
seeking nominations for their annual alumni awards.
The Alumni Association annually recognizes outstanding
alumni for their achievements and accomplishments. Nominations are being
accepted through Friday, Feb. 25. For more information contact Jodi
Neiffer, director of alumni, at 642-6446 or email
nomination form is available on the BHSU website at
choose alumni association.
Nominations are currently being accepted for five
different awards. The Young Alumni Achievement Award honors young alumni
who have distinguished themselves with outstanding achievements,
contributions and service to society, the community and BHSU. Nominees
must have attended college within the past 10 years.
The Distinguished Alumni Award is based on long-term
achievements and service or contributions to BHSU. Nominees must have
graduated at least ten years ago.
The Special Achievement Award recognizes a particular
achievement or contribution to society or community. Nominees need not
have graduated within a certain time frame to be eligible for this
The Excellence in Education Award honors those alumni
who have made outstanding contributions in the field of education.
The Special Service Award is given to honor those
alumni or friends of BHSU who have contributed long-term service or
exceptional effort in a single program or project at BHSU. Nominees for
this award may also be employees or former employees of BHSU.
Adventure Center will sell
balloon bouquets - top
The Adventure Center at Black Hills State University
is now selling balloon bouquets for all occasions for students, faculty, staff
and student organizations.
Beginning in February, balloons will be available in
the Adventure Center, located in the lower level of the David B. Miller
Yellow Jacket Student Union.
According to Ellen Melaragno, senior secretary in the
Student Union, the Adventure Center, which is staffed by students,
decided to sell balloons to meet the needs of students, faculty and
“Need a birthday, get well, congratulations, or
anniversary bouquet or a bouquet to spruce up a special event your
organization is planning? The staff in the Adventure Center can make a
bouquet to suit your needs,” Melaragno said.
She noted that a wide assortment of Valentine’s Day
balloons and bouquets will be available. Valentine orders placed by
Friday, Feb. 11 will be ready to be picked up by Monday, Feb. 14.
She added that balloon bouquets could be created with
specialty items, such as mugs, candy or stuffed animals, purchased from
the University Bookstore.
“We are hoping this will enhance bookstore sales,”
Melaragno said. “Campus balloons are convenient, affordable and
colorful. I think it will really benefit the campus because the balloons
will be available right in the Adventure Center.”
To place an order, visit the Adventure Center or call
Fundraising concert raises
more than $2,700 for music scholarships -
A fundraising concert and silent auction at Black
Hills State University recently raised more than $2,700 for scholarships
for music students.
A local group, Lyle, Doug, Rick and Paul, whose
members are all BHSU graduates presented the concert. A number of local
businesses donated auction items.
According to Susan Hove-Pabst, coordinator of the
event and music faculty member at BHSU, the event was a success.
“We had a really good crowd which was appreciative of
the musicians and their music. I'd say Lyle, Doug, Rick and Paul are
kind of a community treasure. The crowd gave them a truly-earned
standing ovation and, I believe, could have willingly gone on all night
listening to the harmonies,” Hove-Pabst said.
According to Hove-Pabst, the musical group donated
their performance, forfeiting their normal fee, to support their alma
mater. They played a wide variety of music including rock, pop, country,
and an original number.
The event was sponsored by the BHSU Friends of Music
organization, a group of music and BHSU supporters whose main functions
include raising money for music scholarships and generally promoting the
BHSU music department and its events.
“The BHSU Friends of Music are the folks who come to
the music events and act as greeters. The group works in cooperation
with the music faculty,” Hove-Pabst said.
She indicated that BHSU plans to host Lyle, Doug,
Rick, and Paul again. The group is also planning to do a yearly
fundraiser of some sort.
Middle school science
fair held at BHSU - top
Larry Vrooman, a Black Hills State University staff
member, views a science fair display created by sixth graders Kelsey
Jorgenson and Ashten Rombough and at the annual middle school science
fair held recently at the Donald E. Young Sports and Fitness Center on
the campus of Black Hills State University.
A group of BHSU science students, the Health Sciences
Student Organization, as well as education students who are completing
their junior field experience helped conduct the science fair and served
as judges. Several BHSU faculty and staff members also served as judges.
Facilities services helped with the setup and cleanup.
According to Dr. Charlie Lamb, chair of the science
department at BHSU, about 50 percent more presentations than previous
years were included because, for the first time, nearly all of the
eighth graders participated along with the sixth and seventh graders. He
estimated there were 300 presentations highlighting the science research
by 450 middle school students.
announced - top
Below are the program materials received in the Grants Office,
Woodburn 309, through Jan. 27. For copies of the information, contact
the office at 642-6204 or e-mail requests to
information will also be posted on the Student Union bulletin board near
the information desk.
National Forest Foundation 2005 Wilderness Stewardship Challenge
The National Forest Foundation (NFF), chartered by Congress, engages
America in community-based and national programs that promote the health
and public enjoyment of the 192 million acre National Forest System, and
accepts and administers private gifts of funds and land for the benefit
of the National Forests. The NFF funds action-oriented projects that
enhance the viability of natural resources while considering the
benefits to, and the involvement of, surrounding communities. Projects
address NFF’s four programmatic priorities – community-based forest
stewardship, watershed health and restoration, wildlife habitat
improvement, and recreation. In 2005, the NFF will accept applications
from non-governmental, nonprofit organizations to accomplish ecosystem
restoration-related work in Congressionally designated Forest Service
Successful projects will: accomplish measurable on-the-ground results
in designated USDA Forest Service Wilderness Areas; carry out ecosystem
restoration-related work that supports the strategic goals of the
National Forest Foundation and the USDA Forest Service; include a high
level of community involvement, participation and support for the
project; enhance the capacity of local group(s) involvement in the
effective stewardship of wilderness areas; be applicable to other
wilderness areas through easily transferable projects in multiple areas
and sharing of lessons learned; support accomplishment of the USDA
Forest Service “10-Year Wilderness Stewardship Challenge” for Wilderness
Areas; be implemented in one year; develop monitoring models/plans that
can be exported to other USDA Forest Service Wilderness Areas.
Projects will receive a higher rating if the non-federal cash match
is already in hand at the time of application. The NFF Wilderness
Stewardship Challenge will not fund projects that are seeking general
operating support, policy or advocacy work, or cannot produce at least a
1:1 non-federal cash match within one year. The NFF will not fund
educational curriculum development projects. Educational projects
resulting in on-the-ground benefits to wilderness will be considered.
Deadline: March 4. Complete instructions and more information
are available at