Locations and Times

Science Cafe Logo

Wednesday evenings, 7:15 pm
The New Jernabi Coffeehouse 
11 Maple Street
Potsdam, NY  13676

Tuesday evenings, 7:15 pm
The Rushton Conference Room
Best Western University Inn
Canton, NY 13617

Spring 2018 Series Schedule

Here's to the Cosmos
Canton: Tuesday, Feb 6
Potsdam: Wednesday, Feb 7

How did the universe begin? What is it made of? How is it going to end? How big is it? How old? How did galaxies and clusters develop? Why are we here? In this talk, Prof. Cristian Armendariz-Picon (Physics, SLU) will describe how modern cosmology answers these questions within the Big-Bang and inflationary models. Along the way he will explain the meaning of an accelerating universe, what is meant by “dark matter” and “dark energy,” and how we appear to be the result of quantum fluctuations in the vacuum, amplified by an early state of cosmic acceleration. 

“Omelets or Wings?!”
Selective Breeding and the Physiology of the Domestic Chicken
Canton: Tuesday, Feb 27
Potsdam: Wednesday, Feb 28 

From its earliest days of domestication, decades of genetic selection have resulted in significant differences between breeds of chicken: in particular, fast-growing broilers and highly productive egg-layers. But what differences exist at the physiological level between these breeds? What are the implications of these differences on how young chicks develop and mature? How does the modern chicken differ from its wild ancestor, the jungle-fowl? Join Prof. Sarah Sirsat (Biology, SUNY Potsdam) in a fun, interesting discussion of these issues and find out how there’s a lot more to the every-day chicken than meets the eye!

Synchronization and Desynchronization:From Fireflies to Brain Waves to Power Grids
Canton: Tuesday, March 13
Potsdam: Wednesday, March 14

Flashing of fireflies, flocking of birds, and schooling of fish: many different animals exhibit collective, synchronized behavior. But synchronization is not just some fascinating natural phenomenon. For power grids synchronization is critical to the system’s stable operations, whereas for brains excessive synchronization can cause severe diseases and disorders. Join Prof. of Mathematics Jie Sun (Clarkson University) as he describes how despite the fundamental differences between these and many other systems, scientists have managed to develop a unified mathematical framework for modeling synchronization in a broad range of applications.Coming Back from Concussion
Canton: Tuesday, April 3
Potsdam: Wednesday, April 4

Coming Back from Concussion
Canton: Tuesday, April 3
Potsdam: Wednesday, April 4

An explosion of research  has transformed the way that we provide care for those who experience concussions, also known as mild traumatic brain injuries. While “return to play” protocols have improved recovery for many people, others have symptoms that linger for months or years. Join Dr. Rebecca Martin (Clarkson University), PT, DPT and Board Certified Clinical Specialist in Neurologic Physical Therapy, for a discussion on the different types of concussion that individuals may experience and why some people recover more quickly than others. She will provide insight on the intricate process of returning a patient to play, work, or school. 


Hard Maples, Hard Times
Canton: Tuesday, April 17
Potsdam: Wednesday, April 18

Wahtha to the Kanienkeha or Mohawk, senomozi to the western Abenaki, Acer saccharum to botany nerds, and sugar maple to most English-speaking folk, this potentially long-lived tree is important as an icon, as an industry, and, ecologically, as a keystone species. Unfortunately new findings in 2017 suggest it may be in more trouble in parts of northern NY state than it is elsewhere across its range. Join Paul Hetzler, Horticulture and Natural Resources Educator at Cornell Cooperative Extension of St. Lawrence County, as he outlines the problem as we know it, suggests probable and possible causes, and discusses how citizen-science projects might be able to provide valuable data for moving forward.


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