Skip to main content

Boldly Blue. Proudly Innovating.

Studying avalanches with infrasound at Boise State

Rumblings of greatness

The earth’s inaudible, infrasonic radiation can be an indicator to many phenomenon such as snow avalanches, and can be studied and predicted in new, deeper detail thanks to infrasound.

With sensors developed and built by Boise State faculty and students, these rumblings can be recorded and used to mitigate hazards.

Read more about the impact of innovative research

Breaking Down the Academic Math Barrier

Boise State is recognized nationally for how it tackled students’ fears that they were not good at math, enabled them to set their own pace as they mastered concepts, and helped them transition to a college-level learning mindset.

Learn about this innovative approach to education
Quantum Research at Boise State

Dyes, DNA and ‘Ghosts’

Welcome to the quantum world!

A highly specialized team of over 30 students, faculty and staff are part of the Quantum DNA Research Group, known as qDNA. They are taking quantum research to a jaw-dropping new level. Closed captions are available and a video transcript is provided on this page.

"Innovation is in our DNA. It's just what we do at Boise State." — Dr. Marlene Tromp, President

We sometimes call it Blue Turf Thinking, and we’ve been nationally recognized for it. Boise State is building on our culture of innovation — developing research that positively impacts lives, structures that transcend disciplines so researchers and students can collaborate on big problems, and spaces and programs specifically devoted to innovation.

A culture of innovation

​​Rumblings of greatness: Studying avalanches with infrasound at Boise State
Meister receives NSF CAREER award to study ice-nucleating bacteria
Boise State to advance semiconductor tech with National Science Foundation Engine development award
Sagebrush genome and restoration research featured by KTVB
Boise’s backyard astronauts
Boise State joins selective network of universities; president Marlene Tromp attends G7 Summit

We take risks that matter

We want all of our Boise State community to engage in our culture of innovation.

Submit an innovative idea

Video Transcript

(upbeat music)

[Dr. Jeunghoon Lee, Association Professor, Materials Science and Engineering/Chemistry]: So, what we’re trying to do here is actually using DNA to configure dye molecules in a certain geometry to maximize their performance. So, the performance we are after, this was called quantum coherence. So, we want the energy transfer between dyes with the preservation of the quantum coherence information. And we are using DNA as a tool for achieving that. So, with DNA scaffolding, we can achieve a spatial resolution down to nanometer scale. So, it’s not possible to do that using other materials, and DNA is actually used in a lot of different applications. So that makes the availability of DNA great. So, you can simply, you know, buy the DNA within sequences from a lot of different manufacturers, we just simply need to type in the sequence, and then just hit enter, and then we receive the DNA. And they’re fairly inexpensive.

[Dr. Olya Mass, Senior Research Scholar, Materials Science and Engineering]: We do take, yes, inspiration from plants. And specifically, we’ve taken inspiration from photosynthetic antenna in green plants or purple bacterium. So, for example, in those natural photosynthetic antenna there are pigments. So, they’re usually called chlorophylls. So those pigments nature uses to absorb light and funnel the excitation energy to the reaction center. The nature funnels it to the reaction center using principles of quantum mechanics. Some researchers believe that we are trying to make this synthetic analogs of those natural pigments like chlorophylls advance their properties in terms of stability, in terms of function, but pretty much we are trying to mimic natural pigments and use them in our quantum material. So, we are trying to mimic natural pigments and make them do what they’re doing in photosynthetic antenna. Doing quantum research and creating those quantum materials, we will be able to create information systems that will solve some particular problems much faster and using less energy. So, it might be very important, for example, medical diagnostics when we would have to consider like many, many scenarios or paths simultaneously. (machine whirring)

[Jeunghoon]: For students it is a very unique opportunity to get involved in this high caliber research. I believe we are one of the groups that got into DNA nanotechnology pretty early on since late 2000s. And at Boise State we have the freedom to collaborate with a lot of other researchers. Partly because we are small, smaller than other institutions. And that made it possible to assemble an awesome group of researchers.

(upbeat music)