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Bryan Bandli demonstrates the Scanning Electron Microscope

Innovative Technology Takes Center Stage

TechFest has returned to showcase the innovative technology that UMD has to offer. TechFest is a place where faculty, staff, students and the community have an opportunity to see how technology is being utilized to enrich the educational experience on the UMD campus.

On Friday, March 26 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., students, faculty, and staff from across UMD offer dozens of presentations and displays about the rise of new and innovative technologies being used at UMD. Tech Fest is sponsored by Information Technology Systems and Services (ITSS).

The exhibits in the Kirby Ballroom will show the latest in computers, software, devices, media, and more. TechFest took a break in 2009, but came back in 2010 because of its popularity. At past TechFests, some presentations have been about tips on using Graduation Planner and ePortfolio, techniques on using technology in educational settings as well as in environmental settings, to name a few. This year, many new presentations are being offered to showcase the technology that UMD faculty and students have discovered.

One of the most popular exhibits in the past was presented by Bryan Bandli, a scientist in the UMD geological sciences department/SEM laboratory. His presentation is called "Scanning Electron Microscope Lab: Campus Resource for Teaching and Learning" and features live remote operation of a microscope via Ethernet connection projected onto a screen. The presentation will be featured once again at the 2010 Tech Fest. It gives the opportunity to use a high-powered microscope to see what various objects contain, such as pollen, hair follicles, or rocks.

Bandli believes the Scanning Electron Microscope offers a great opportunity for students and faculty to use innovative technology to further science. "This new technology has the potential to help students make significant discoveries in science. It's a great piece of new technology." The microscope is anything but micro, taking up a very large portion of a laboratory, so it will not actually be in the Kirby Ballroom. By connecting via Ethernet, spectators can still experience the power and magnitude of the microscope.

Below are some images from the Scanning Electron Microscope.

chocolate pollen sem

Ultimately, the goal of TechFest is to raise awareness about the wealth of technological services, resources, and initiatives available at UMD. The UMD community and the public are invited to see how technology enriches the educational experience. TechFest offers an opportunity to share information about cutting edge research and new innovations aided by UMDís premier technology landscape. And, itís a chance to have some fun, too.

For more information please contact Sheri Pihlaja at 218-726-6975 or email or go to the TechFest Web site.

Above: 2008 TechFest    

Written by Cheryl Reitan and Mandee Kuglin

UMD home page editor, Cheryl Reitan,
NEW RELEASES, UMD media contact, Susan Latto,, 218-726-8830

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Last modified on 04/22/11 02:37 PM
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