An eye on Earl

Chapel Hill, NC—As Hurricane Earl strengthened and headed toward North Carolina’s coast, RENCI researchers tracked it’s every move with a Weather Research Forecast (WRF) model that plotted the storm’s course on a grid, with each point in the grid representing a 3-kilometer-by-3-kilometer box. Read more

Hurricane Katrina five years later: A humanities focused observance

Hurricane Katrina aftermath at sunrise. Photo by Donn Young.

Title: Hurricane Katrina Fiver Years Later: A Humanities Focused Observance

Description: To observe the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina – this country’s largest natural and human-caused disaster – UNC’s Center for the Study of the American South, Center for the Study of Natural Hazards and Disasters, in partnership with the Center for Poverty, Work and Opportunity, School of Government and School of Law are coming together to explore the human impact of the storm through workshops, storytelling, photography, singing and songwriting. A series of free events from Wednesday, September 8th through Friday, September 10th will offer attendees an opportunity to understand how the storm impacted people and communities and how lives are being rebuilt and renewed. The full schedule of events is below:

Event Poster (pdf)

Start Date: 2010-09-08
End Date: 2010-09-10

Study shows nearly 570 percent increase in western NC development since 1976

Charlotte,  N.C. – From 1976 to 2006, land development in the North Carolina mountains increased 568 percent, from 34,348 acres to 229,422 acres, and is expected to increase another 63 percent by 2030 (an additional 145,374 acres), according to a study just released by researchers at the Renaissance Computing Institute (RENCI) at UNC Charlotte. Read more

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Visual Decision Pathways

Sharron Docherty understands that medical care for a critically ill infant involves much more than treatments designed to bring about a cure. Read more

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National Weather Service taps RENCI to explore decision support services for weather emergencies

CHAPEL HILL, NC–NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS) Office of Science and Technology will provide $400,000 to the Renaissance Computing Institute (RENCI) to develop and evaluate technologies that will help the emergency management community prepare for and respond to weather events such as hurricanes, tornadoes, blizzards and floods.   Read more

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UNC scientist: Tropical storms will move Gulf oil

Hurricane Alex ADCIRC model

What will a hurricane do to the massive oil slick churning in the Gulf of Mexico?

Hurricane Alex, which impacted south Texas and parts of Mexico in June, is the best source of data  scientists have for studying this question.  According to Rick Luettich, an oceanographer and director of UNC Chapel Hill’s Center of Excellence for Natural Hazards, Coastal Infrastructure and Emergency Management, Alex, a minimal hurricane, taught us that a tropical storm absolutely will move the oil. Read more

Three Duke research teams selected for new campus info viz program

Visualization of the construction of Francesco a Folloni, Campania, Italy. What began as a class project will expand through the RENCI@Duke Applied Scientific and Information Visualization program.

DURHAM, NC–RENCI experts in visualization, visual analytics, and data mining and management will work with three Duke University research teams—one in the School of Medicine and two in art, art history, and visual studies—on projects to improve treatments for prostate cancer and to document the evolution of historic places, artwork, and art markets.

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Storm Surge 2010

GREENVILLE, May 28—RENCI@ECU’s Inundation Animation Portal features animations created by faculty, students, and staff that attempt to provide a greater understanding of the devastating effects of storm surges related to coastal storms and hurricanes.

NSF names Alan Blatecky acting head of cyberinfrastructure office

Alan Blatecky, far left, with UNC Vice Chancellor for Research and Economic Development Tony Waldrop, School of Government Dean Mike Smith, and former Chancellor James Moeser.

WASHINGTON, D.C., — Alan Blatecky, the former Deputy Director of  RENCI and Interim Director from December 2007 – September 2009, was named Acting Director of the National Science Foundation’s Office of Cyberinfrastructure (OCI) this week by NSF Director Arden Bement.   Read more

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A particle of difference

Uma Shankar and Alexis Zubrow know all too well that what you breathe can be hazardous to your health. The two are research associates at the Institute for the Environment at UNC Chapel Hill who study atmospheric pollutants such as particulate matter and ozone and how technology tools can be used to help decision makers understand their properties and make informed decisions related to human health and environmental quality. With help from RENCI, they are now able to “see” microscopic pollutant particles (particulate matter, or PM) and examine how PM populations are distributed in size and how their physical characteristics change over time. Read more

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