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Our Changing World

New stories from July 2021

Kia ora


Welcome to the July newsletter, hard to believe it is August already!

In exciting news for the show, Alison Ballance's amazing series Voices from Antarctica has been named as a finalist for the New York Festivals Radio Awards. Give it a listen if you haven't already.

Another wide range of topics covered this month, from an implantable device to detect pressure in the brain, to studying bird song evolution and culture, and, with the Tokyo Olympics underway, the most recent episode focuses on a low energy condition impacting many athletes.

Hope you enjoy!
Ngā mihi,
Claire

Running low on energy


Researchers from the University of Waikato talk about Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport (RED-S) - a condition in which athletes don't take in the right number of calories for the amount of exercise they are doing.

Katie Schofield and Holly Thorpe explain why the problem is much more complex than just calorie intake, and why it is important to research this condition in a multidisciplinary way.

The spectrum of research


One way to think about scientific research is on a spectrum from blue sky to applied. Claire Concannon learns about a blue-sky research project on bacterial evolution about to kick off in the University of Waikato, while Katy Gosset visits the University of Canterbury to watch testing of their new system of base isolation designed to help homes during earthquakes.

Breaking down bird song

Claire Concannon speaks to Dianne Brunton, Michelle Roper and Wesley Webb of Massey University about how songbirds develop and learn their song, how to break down bird song into its separate components to study it, and why female songbirds have been traditionally overlooked - and what this group is doing to correct that.

Crafty Mathematics


Mathematical rules and equations can help us get new perspectives on our world, but sometimes can be difficult to comprehend.

In this episode, stories about how maths has helped the understanding of an enigmatic quirk of heart rate control and how crafts can be used to better understand maths.

Designing a pressure sensor for the brain


Researchers at the Auckland Bioengineering Institute are working on what they hope will be the first New Zealand designed Class 3 medical device - an implantable pressure sensor for the brain, to help people with hydrocephalus. The team explain the sensor design, how it works and how they test it.
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Our Changing World airs after the 9PM news on Thursday nights on RNZ National 101FM. Here's a handy list of our AM and FM frequencies across the country. You can also listen live on the RNZ website.

The show repeats after the 1AM news on Sunday mornings, and one story also plays on Wednesdays at 3.35PM.
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