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Contents, Edition 2008

Spring 2008 Cover


Giant Lab
Jornada Experimental Range helps scientists understand changes over past century

Making the Most of Water
Gravity-driven drip irrigation designed for underdeveloped areas

Ancient Criollo Cattle
Rugged breed of cattle offer new options in semiarid lands

Adaptability May Be the Key
Economist studies how people deal with changing environment

A Bold Commitment
NMSU fighting for climate neutrality

Poplars Show Promise in Four Corners Area
Trees could serve as fuel source and as phytoremediators

High-Performance Computing
ARL grant will fund research and outreach

Troublesome Chemical
Bisphenol A disrupts cell division by targeting key protein

NMSU Working to Build a STEM Success Center
Helping develop the next generation

Climate Change Alters Indigenous Way of Life
Researcher studies the language of the Inuit

Self-healing Materials
NMSU receives NASA EPSCoR award for aerospace research


Message from Vice President for Research

New Mexico State University brings to bear a long tradition of excellence in water research as it examines current concerns and challenges related to the availability, quality and quantity of our water. This is especially true in a semi-arid state, where every drop can make a difference to our woodlands, communities and agricultural lands.

This focus on water research has been a priority throughout our 125-year heritage as a land-grant institution, and is especially important given New Mexico’s dry climate.

Water research has a significant presence among our Core Research Strengths. Listed under the topic of “Sustainability,” our water research and outreach programs are conducted by researchers in four colleges based at our Las Cruces campus and the Agricultural Science Centers, located across New Mexico.

NMSU is headquarters for the statewide and federally supported (in part) New Mexico Water Resources Research Institute, which studies aquifer salinity, water availability, quality, sustainability, and water-related border and international issues.

Other key research initiatives originating in the College of Engineering include the National Science Foundation funded Engineering Research Center, which is a multi-university effort to reinvent America’s aging and inadequate urban water infrastructure. NMSU joins Stanford University, the Colorado School of Mines and the University of California, Berkeley, in this effort.

Research efforts led by the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences focus on water technology research in Afghanistan; monitoring and solving trans-boundary water issues on the U.S-Mexico border; the link between traditional irrigation systems and ecosystem and watershed health; and the effects of climate change on New Mexico’s mountain sources of water.

I invite you to learn more about our critical, community-oriented water research activities in the following pages of this magazine.

Excellence in water research at New Mexico State University is a longtime source of pride and an everyday responsibility as we explore the best opportunities and seek the best solutions to the challenges related to the availability, quality and quantity of this precious resource.

Vimal Chaitanya, Vice President for Research

Signature of Vimal Chaitanya Vice President for Research
Vimal Chaitanya
Vice President for Research