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Bonneville Salt Flats, Chile Peppers, Cycling Headphones

Top of Mind with Julie Rose
  • Aug 10, 2015
  • 01:42:18

Bonneville Salt Lake Flats (1:03) Guest: Kevin Oliver, West Desert District Manager for the Bureau of Land Management in Utah.  Last weekend was to have been the annual Speed Week race on the legendary Utah expanse known as the Bonneville Salt Flats. Racers driving anything with wheels have long congregated to the spot hoping to reach speeds of 300 or 400 miles per hour – and of course, set a record.  The event was cancelled this year, just as it was last year. Race organizers say there’s not enough smooth, hard salt to race on. Mud is oozing up through the salt crust that forms the bed of an ancient lake called Bonneville which once filled the entire Salt Lake Valley.  Chile Peppers (17:12) Guest: Paul Bosland, Ph.D., Director of the Chile Pepper Institute and Professor at New Mexico State University.  What’s your heat threshold? I’m talking spice here. Are bell peppers your limit? Or are you the one loading up on jalapenos and adding a dash of habanero to everything?  Scientists believe chile peppers evolved their distinct heat to keep mammals from eating them. And look how that turned out . . . How did we end up loving the spiciness that was developed to keep us away?   Cycling Headphones (40:00) Guest: Gemma Roper, Designer of “Safe + Sound” headphones.  Bike commuting and cycling for fun are on the rise in cities across the U.S., which corresponds to a recent rise in bike-auto fatalities. Nearly 750 cyclists died in crashes with motor vehicles in 2013. Nearly 50,000 bicyclists were injured in motor vehicle crashes.  One concern among cyclists is the headphones in their ears. Listening to music makes for a more entertaining ride, but can also block out the sound of oncoming vehicles.  Now a design expert is using an ancient technique of bone-conduction to make safer headphones for cyclists.  Samurai Warriors (51:53) Guests: Aaron Skabelund, Ph.D., Assistant Professor in the Department of History at BYU; Jack Stoneman, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Japanese at BYU.  In recent weeks, Japan’s leaders have begun shifting the nation away from the pacifist stance forced upon them when they lost World War II. They’re moving to expand the purpose of the Japanese military beyond mere self-defense.  Today we’re going to roll the clock back several centuries to a time when Japan was synonymous with great warriors – the samurai.  Link to the Guns, Scrolls and Swords exhibition.  Parent Previews (1:13:39) Guest: Rod Gustafson, Critic at Tom Cruise is back as Ethan Hunt in “Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation”. He’s assembled a team to track down a rogue syndicate intent on destroying their own secret agency.  Tech Transfer (1:26:29) Guests: Carl Sorensen, Ph.D. ,Professor of Mechanical Engineering at BYU; Tracy Nelson, Ph.D., Professor of Mechanical Engineering at BYU; Mike Alder, J.D., Director of BYU’s Technology Transfer Office.  In a society where so much is made of metal, welding is key to make the various shapes we rely on – houses, cars, and furniture. Welding is an ancient art dating back to the Bronze and Iron Ages. But there’s still room for improvement and innovation.  Today's guest for our weekly innovation segment have come up with a new welding method that creates a bond so strong the joint itself often ends up stronger than the individual pieces of metal that have been welded. Show More...

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