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Research News

August 5, 2019

OU Microbiologists Provide Framework for Assessing Ecological Diversity

Jizhong Zhou

A University of Oklahoma team of microbiologists have developed a mathematical framework for quantitatively assessing ecological diversity in an ecological community whether deterministic or stochastic. A recent study by the team published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences examines the mechanisms controlling biological diversity and provides guidance for use of the null-model-based approaches for examining processes within the community.

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August 1, 2019

OU Professor Recipient of DOE Early Career Research Program Funding


A University of Oklahoma assistant professor, Bin Wang, is the recipient of a five-year, $750,869 grant from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science as part of the DOE Early Career Research Program.

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July 29, 2019

OU-led study shows improved estimates of tropical forest area and loss in the Brazilian Amazon in 2000-2017


A University of Oklahoma-led study generated improved annual maps of tropical forest cover in the Brazilian Amazon in 2000-2017 and provided better characterization on the spatio-temporal dynamics of forest area, loss and gain in this region. The Amazon basin has the largest tropical forests in the world. 

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July 23, 2019

A case study in happy extremophiles: The touchy science behind achieving a pure, thriving culture of methanotrophs

Petri plate with colonies of a methanotrophic microorganism. Photo courtesy Christopher Abin

If asked to describe your ideal environment, the odds are you wouldn’t opt for somewhere exceedingly salty, with an acidic pH or a dense supply of methane. However, some organisms (with fewer cells and vastly different standards than you and me) would say that sounds just about perfect. 

Read full article on Sanford Lab

July 15, 2019

OU Research Team Developing New Methodology and Smart Wellbore Materials for Geothermal Drilling


A University of Oklahoma research team is developing smart lost circulation materials that use shape memory polymers activated by geothermal temperatures to prevent the loss of fluid in fractured rocks near the wellbore. These materials expand within the fractures to reduce non-drilling time and strengthen the wellbore in high-temperature drilling operations.

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