Archive for Kristen Brosnan
You are browsing the archives of Kristen Brosnan.
You are browsing the archives of Kristen Brosnan.
We just got word of an exciting event underway right now to support women in STEM careers.
Today and tomorrow GE Global Research is hosting a Women in Science and Engineering symposium at their Niskayuna, N.Y. location. The event is “aimed specifically at talking about how to recruit, develop and retain female technologists,” according to Kristen Brosnan, a GE materials scientist and ACerS member. Brosnan also is a frequent contributor to Edison’s Desk, GE Global’s blog and will be live blogging and tweeting from the symposium.
In fact, in today’s blog post Brosnan announces that, in addition to this WISE symposium, she and a few colleagues are opening up a new topic thread called Wise Words. The goal, she writes, is to share “wise words from women starting, continuing or at the peak of their careers in technology and women learning how to balance their careers and other commitments.” Brosnan has written before about her concern over “the alarming rates that women leave science and technology careers,” beginning with here post, “Navigating the Glass Maze.”
The two-day WISE symposium is an invitation-only gathering for managers, human resources and leaders, but Brosnan will keep us all apprised of the key ideas and take-aways. She says in an email, “I see it as a great first step in addressing the issues brought up in all the studies that show women leave their science/technology careers mid-career. I am so glad that the conversation is getting started!”
Here is a partial list of the speakers:
Follow Brosnan’s Wise Words blog here, or follow her on Twitter, @kristenbrosnan, #GEWiseWords.
Don’t let the “snow on the roof” of my colleague Peter Wray fool you. He’s a very forward-thinking guy, and he’s been wondering for a looooong time (maybe since before the “snow” arrived), why it is that posters have to be, well, posters?
Wouldn’t it be more interesting to use technology to show a series of micrographs instead of picking the best one? Wouldn’t it be cool to show a simulation of a heat treatment process? Wouldn’t it make sense to show a video of a mechanical test during the exciting bust-up? After all, the purpose of a “poster session” is to provide an informal, interactive forum for researchers to talk about their work.
Perhaps he had the ears of the organizers of the 4th International Congress on Ceramics, or maybe the idea has reached its critical moment in evolution, but an exciting feature of the July event will be the Interactive Technology Forum, a new kind of poster session that will allow researchers to present their results in dynamic, interesting ways.
ICC4 president, Kathy Faber, tells more about it in the video above, and here is what others are saying about it:
“This interactive forum will bring poster sessions into the 21st century and is exciting because it allows for researchers to present their data in a more creative and visual style.” — Kristen Brosnan, GE Global Research
“This format allows the presenter to interact with his/her audience directly, perhaps replotting data in a different way or looking at a tomography image from a different angle to discuss a specific point.” — Joe Ryan, Pacific Northwest National Lab
“A poster presented electronically will enhance visualization to attract interest of attendees, and help the authors to present their ideas and results more effectively. In particular, materials modeling and simulation results can be vividly presented on a computer.” — Sumin Zhu, Vesuvius Research
“This innovative presentation format will allow researchers to communicate their work in a much more engaging manner. Along with the traditional poster, presenters will be able to use new electronic tools, hands-on materials, and interactive displays to better communicate and discuss their ideas and results with conference attendees.” — Kevin Fox, Savannah River National Lab.
You can be sure Peter will be there talking to presenters and taking pictures. If you see him, ask him what he thinks the next step in the evolution of technical meetings should be!
See the other ICC4 videos:
Via a note from Kristen Brosnan, I learned that Lesley Stahl and her 60 Minutes crew at CBS are doing a big story tomorrow (Feb. 21) on Bloom Energy and the apparent success of their solid oxide fuel cell system that has been packaged into what the company is marketing as a “Bloom Box.” Click on the picture above for a promo video.
Apparently, Bloom has moved testing out of the lab some time ago and has found success in testing five of the appliances on eBay’s corporate offices The CBS web site says:
John Donahoe, CEO of eBay, confirms Bloom Boxes were installed at his corporate campus nine months ago. The company says the boxes already saved them over $100,000 in electricity bills. “It’s been very successful thus far. [The Bloom Boxes] have done what they said they would do,” says Donahoe. The five boxes are able to produce five times as much electricity as the 3,248 solar panels that eBay installed on its campus roofs, says the CEO. “The footprint for Bloom is much more efficient,” he tells Stahl.
The CBS website report that Bloom Energy says each box could support 100 residences and cost $700,000-$800,000, and that a single-family unit might be available in another five years for an estimated $3,000.
The 60 Minutes story is something of a teaser. Bloom Energy, formerly known as Ion Technologies America, for quite some time has been advertising a “countdown” to a heretofore secret corporate unveiling.
I’ll try to get some reaction from the participants at ACerS’ upcoming Materials Challenges in Energy 2010 conference that starts Sunday night in Cocoa Beach.
… adding, if you want to know more about Bloom, and the role their investment partners at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, it is definitely worth checking out Jon Gertner’s Oct. 2008 long article written for the New York Times Sunday Magazine. The link takes you to the part of the article to gets the deepest into Bloom, but the whole article is a good read.
… also adding two additional data points. First, a post at earth2tech has some more information on what’s going to happen at Bloom’s big event Wednesday. More, importantly, there is some interesting information revealed about Bloom’s vision of its SOFC that came out in an October interview by Alison van Diggelen (Fresh Dialogues) in which Bloom Energy founder KR Sridhar expands on the Bloom Box’s potential as a generic hydrogen-creation machine. Here is the payoff in the exchange:
Alison: And I also understand part of the Bloom box is splitting out the hydrogen?
KR: That’s an option. People always ask, ‘it’s electricity – is it a fuel cell for the car?’ The answer is no. This is for stationary uses like buildings and houses.
So then the question is, you have a big transportation infrastructure that requires fuel for that. Transportation can potentially go in two directions in the future: one is a hydrogen infrastructure for the car, the other one is an electrical infrastructure. We’re already getting a lot more comfortable with plug-in hybrids… which is right on the horizon.
[. . .]
So, our device can either produce the electricity that will charge the car or provide you hydrogen if the transportation becomes hydrogen based. So we’ve sort of become the gas station for the transportation industry.
Alison: Your vision of the future with this KR…has been described as a refrigerator-sized device.
KR: That’s the ultimate vision. How we get there I cannot describe right now.
Alison: So that’s maybe, what 20 years off…who knows?
KR: Silicon Valley time, ultimate is within a decade, right?
Alison: So it’s all within a decade.
KR: Right, right.
For additional recent CTT stories on SOFCs, see
GE recently overhauled its blog and its worth stopping by to see the goodies. The blog, called “Edison’s Desk,” looks great and promises to cover lots of news related to what GE is working on, including materials science-related topics. It also looks like the blog is going to cover stories outside GE that the staff think are interesting and worth monitoring.
I am especially excited that ACerS member Kristen Brosnan will be one of their regular editors/contributors, especially on ceramics and metallurgy topics. Brosnan has been working in energy and environmental projects including solid-oxide fuel cells, NOx sensors and waste heat generators. She is a dynamic young professional who is definitely worth watching in the future.
Kristen is already attending conferences with mini video cam in hand, so anticipate great things ahead in her posts!