Spring 2011 BYU-Idaho Student Research and Creative Works Conference



Poster A: Math/Science

1.  Austin Blaser, Robert Holman, Carlos Anciniegas

2. Michael Pack, Ben Byington

3. Stuart and Michelle Schultheis


Poster B:  Social Science

1. Brian Riches

2. Nicholas Sorenson, Karleia Kerstetter, Zac West

3. Michael Arnold


Oral A: Campus, Teaching, and Learning

1. Phillip Scott

2. Allison Saunders

3. Robert J Holman

Oral B: Physical Science/Engineering

1. Brian Oswald, Kenneth Aycock, Felipe Porto

2. Cody Cushman

3. Jacopo Lafrancheschina


Oral C: Social Science

1. Gage Hart Zobell

2. Mariana Salamanca

3. Timothy Ng


Oral D: Arts, Language, and Letters

1. Jeff White

2. Kristine George

3. Sara Robertson, Elizabeth Anderson



2:00 – 5:00 PM Engineering Open House      MC Crossroads Info Booths

4:00 – 4:30 pm Registration     MC Crossroads in front of Grand Ballroom A

            Presenters check in and receive a name badge and program

4:30 – 9:00 pm Poster Sessions  MC Grand Ballroom A         

                Presenters will be available at their displays to answer questions and explain their research from 4:30 until 6:00.

6:00 – 8:00 pm Oral Sessions

Presentations will be fifteen minutes (12 minutes for the paper and 3 minutes for questions).Session start times are staggered to end simultaneously at 8pm.

Session A: Campus, Teaching & Learning:  MC 176A

Session B: Physical Science/Engineering: MC174B

Session C: Social Sciences: MC174A

Session D: Art, Language& Letters:  MC 176B

8:00 – 9:00 pm Reception & Refreshments     MC Grand Ballroom A

Judges will gather in MC 177 to tabulate scores.

9:00 – 9:30 pm Awards Ceremony      MC Little Theater

Awards will be given to the top three presentations in each session.


Poster A: Math and Science MC Ballroom A 4:30-6pm

1. Temporal And Spatial Analysis Of The Buttermilk Landslide Complex Near Weiser, Idaho

Colby Hazard, Jason Bergquist - Geology

The Buttermilk Landslide near Weiser, Idaho is a historic landslide complex that formed over a century ago on a bluff of lacustrine deposits of the Glenn’s Ferry Formation. Historical orthophotos make it clear that the slide began to develop a new headwall by 1994 and continued creeping until there was substantial slope failure on July 5, 2006. This major slide event caused the toe to advance 30-40 meters, and the headwall retreat was 80-100. Annual precipitation from July 2005-June 2006 was 164% of the average for the previous 7 years. March 2006 precipitation was 316% of the average for the previous 7 years at 3.3 inches which is the highest ever recorded. On October 29, 2010 over 650 points were taken using a Leica survey grade GPS rover to outline and document ongoing movement of the headwall, toe, and body of the landslide. Data collected spring 2011 will be used to evaluate possible movement. Topographic profiles created using 1/3 arc second and 1 meter digital elevation models are used to compare pre- and post-slide geometries. Samples analyzed using the Atterberg limits test have a plasticity index of 46.5% signifying a high volume change potential and high clay content.


2. Collecting Inexpensive High Resolution Aerial and Stereo Images of Small- to Mid-Scale Geomorphic and Tectonic Features

William White, Robert Wheelwright – Geology
High resolution aerial images are valuable for documenting and analyzing small to mid-scale geomorphic and tectonic features.  Methods for collecting accurate, millimeter-to-centimeter-scale aerial imagery of these features were developed for a total cost of $1500. Collecting images of features such as landslides and cinder cones is expensive.  Cost makes studies utilizing high resolution repeat imagery prohibitive for programs with limited budgets.  The methods developed are inexpensive and provide high resolution data suitable for image processing, change analysis, and synthesis of DEMs. Small-scale data acquisition applications, e.g. gravel bars, utilize two DSLR cameras elevated to a height of ~4 meters on a pole system with a camera separation of 0.6 to 0.9 m. To capture images of medium scale features a single camera is suspended at an elevation of approximately 100 m from a tethered weather balloon. The balloon is physically moved to capture the second stereo pair. The technique for rendering TIN and Raster imagery from the collected data was developed using Photosynth©, extracting the pointcloud via Synthexport© and importing the pointcloud data into ArcGis.  ArcGis 3D Analyst functions converted the pointcloud into TIN and Raster format allowing for 3D modeling.  Techniques developed substantially decreased cost of data acquisition.

Digital Flood Inundation Models Generated From LiDAR Data and HEC-RAS Software – Teton River, Madison County, Idaho
Martell Strong, Elina Jensen – Geology

LiDAR data, in conjunction with geographic information system (GIS) software, are successfully used to model flood inundation along theTeton River, Idaho. The model predicts inundation for a 100-year flood as a benchmark to compare with published Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs); it also predicts flood inundation for river discharge greater and less than the 100-year event. The model consists of hundreds of cross-sectional river profiles acquired using ArcGIS 10 software to interpolate a LiDAR-derived, 1-m resolution, bare earth digital elevation model (DEM) of the river and surrounding floodplain. The cross-sections are imported into the Hydrologic Engineering Center River Anaylsis System (HEC-RAS) software which models floodwater extent based on discharge, river shape, and floodplain elevations. A discharge value of 7280 ft3/sec represents a 100-year flood event on the Teton River. Coefficients of friction for Manning’s equation are selected dependent upon the ground cover of overbanks and the nature of the bed load in the river channel at each cross-sectional river profile. HEC-RAS generates a georeferenced polygon shapefile of the predicted floodwater extent based on discharge values and the coefficients of friction used in Manning’s equation. Layering the shapefile with the LiDAR data and with 1-m resolution NAIP imagery gives a clear picture of the 100-year floodplain for the Teton River and illustrates where potential flood damage to agricultural, business and residential structures may occur. An advantage of modeling riverine floods using the outlined method is that once the data is assembled, various discharge values and their resulting flood extents can be simulated quickly providing near real-time inundation maps during high water run-off.

4. Age constraints on cinder cones from slope diffusion and digitally-acquired morphometric parameters – examples from Spencer High Point, Snake River Plain, Idaho
Austin P. Blaser, Robert J. Holman, Carlos A. Arciniegas – Geology
An analytical solution to a diffusion equation for cinder cones and a new digital method for collecting and comparing morphometric data on cinder cones are developed and used to constrain ages of undated cinder cones from the Spencer High Point (SHP) basalt plateau, southeastern Idaho. Cinder cones consist primarily of unconsolidated fallout tephra that degrade over time (e.g., slopes flatten, edges smooth, and cone heights and bases respectively diffuse downward and outward). We assume that cinder cones diffuse at a steady state and that the geomorphic indices derived in other geographic regions are applicable in SE Idaho. Historically, morphometric data of cinder cones are gathered from topographic maps; however, we develop methods that use a Geographic Information System (GIS) to efficiently collect and calculate morphometric parameters from readily available 30-m resolution digital elevation models (DEMs). Morphometric parameters gathered from DEMs of the cinder cones define boundary conditions for the diffusion model. The diffusion equation ht = Khrr, (h is the height, r is the radius) models how a single profile degrades through time and depends on a diffusion constant K (m2ky-1) that describes the erosion rate. We evaluate a range of K-values derived for the Intermountain west (3.9-10 m2ky-1).

5. Fourier Analysis with Signal Processing Applications
Emily Gould – Mathematics
Fourier analysis is a major component of modern signal processing. Here, a brief introduction to the theory of Fourier analysis will be given. The Fourier series and the Fourier transform will be discussed. Also, the details of the discrete Fourier transform and the fast Fourier transform will be presented. Applications include the decomposition of a musical chord into the frequency components and filtering a sound file using the fast Fourier transform. In all the computations the MATLAB environment was used.


6. Wavelet Theory: An Application to Image Compression
Nathan Sparks – Mathematics
Wavelet theory is a foundation of many modern image-processing techniques.  Here we use the Haar wavelet to illustrate these main ideas.  An introduction to Haar wavelets is given, as well as a review of relevant functional analysis topics.  The Haar wavelet is used to perform naïve, lossy compression of an image.  An important tool is the cumulative energy function, which allows us to determine which pixels can be discarded.

7. Computational exploration of pinene-based peroxy-hydroxy organic radicals.
Michael Pack, Ben Byington – Chemistry
Computational exploration of pinene-based peroxy-hydroxy organic radicals.
Pinenes are a set of common biogenically emitted compounds, and a common constituent of turpentine. Its presence in the atmosphere may subject it to attack from hydroxy radicals and oxygen, forming hydroxy-peroxy-organic radicals.  Such radicals are influential in a variety of atmospheric processes such as formation of trophospheric ozone and NOx. The present study reports on the lowest energy conformations of pinene-based organic radicals.  Molecular properties determined from this study, such as bond lengths, bond angles, and vibrational frequencies, will aid in efforts to understand how water interacts with pinene in the atmosphere to form stable radical-water complexes that may serve an essential role in atmospheric chemistry processes.

8. Computational Study of Hexanal Peroxy Radical-Water Complexes
Emily Burrell - Chemistry, Mathew Snow, chemistry (alumni), Heidi Dumais, physics (alumni) , Seong-Cheol Lee,  chemistry (alumni), Brad J. Nielson, chemistry (alumni), Derek Osborne, physics (alumni), Lucia Salamanca-Cardona, biology (alumni), Logan Zemp, chemistry (alumni)
This work reports the results of a computational investigation on hydroxy-peroxy radical-water complexes derived from 2-E-hexenal, an important component of biogenic atmospheric emissions.  Binding energies for the 2-hydroxy-3-peroxy hexanal radical water complex and the 2-peroxy-3-hydroxy hexanal radical water complex are predicted to be to 6.3 kcal mol-1 and 5.6 kcal mol-1 , respectively, at the MP2/6-311++G(2d,2p) level.  Natural bonding orbital and natural energy decomposition analyses demonstrate that hydrogen bonding between water and the hydroxy and aldehyde moieties of the radical are primarily responsible for complex stability, with only small interactions with the peroxy moiety observed.  Thermochemistry calculations reveal expected complex lifetimes somewhat larger than those recently reported for several hydroxy isoprene peroxy radicals.  This suggests the hexnal peroxy radical-water complexes can play a major role in radical atmospheric chemistry that merits further study. This study has been submitted as an invited paper to The International Journal of Quantum Chemistry.

9. Time Transgressive Study of Meandering on the Henry’s Fork of the Snake River
Sara Nieuwenhuis, Chris Leach – Geology
A sinuous pattern dominates many rivers, with a small jog growing into a sizable meander. The meander grows as the outside of the bend experiences erosion and deposition on the inside. This erosion and deposition causes lateral migration of the meander loops. The Henry’s Fork of the Snake River, Idaho is a meandering river.  How much has the Henry’s Fork moved over time? Did the Teton flood (1976) have an effect on the channel of the Henry’s Fork? Our goal is to track the meandering pattern and possible migration over a series of years. Data that we analyzed from the National Agriculture Imagery Program (NAIP) images suggests a rate of 21.78 meters per year of meander migration between 1955 and 2010.  The study focuses on the Warm Slough to White Slough area of the Henery’s Fork of the Snake River (Fremont and Madison counties).  ArcGIS was used to create polygons of the river locations in the NAIP images of different years.  The overlaid polygons do not overlap, especially among the cut bank of larger meanders, suggesting migration of 130.65 meters over 55 years.  This migration can potentially affect future building locations, property boundaries, and water rights over time.  Over time, we will further the study using digital orthophotos, LandSAT, topographic maps, and Digital Elevation Models (DEMs). 

10. Clustering Snake River Plain Geological Data
Michelle Schulthies, Stuart Schulthies – Mathematics
Geologists have hypothesized that rock samples gathered from the Snake River Plain can be grouped into four categories: normal basalt, normal granite, a basalt/granite mixture, and extensive fractional crystallization basalt. A cluster analysis was performed on aggregated geological sample composition data. After the data were standardized, a two-step clustering algorithm was used to generate an initial vector for the K-means clustering. The two-step clustering method suggested that five clusters were optimal. Three of these clusters coincide closely to the current geological hypothesis. The remaining two clusters were a division one of the hypothesized groups. This clustering method also provides a way to classify future samples.

11. Ballistics in water
Schyler Porter, Joe Hubbard, Kushal Bhattarai – Physics
The purpose of this experiment is to calculate the drag coefficient of a bullet in water .Specifically a 40 cal. bullet. We decided to construct a water tank, 6 feet long x 1ft x 1ft out of wood with one side 1/4 inch glass. We would shoot horizontally through the tank.  The shooting end of the Tank was Styrofoam so the bullet would not disfigure or loose very much velocity as it entered the water.  Doing this would eliminate the pressure change of the water if the bullet were to travel vertically through the water thus affecting the rate at which the bullet slowed down.   Assuming all goes well as the bullet passes from one end of the tank to the other we could then calculate the position, velocity and acceleration of the bullet with the scale marked on the glass and a high speed camera. Once the data is collected we can plot these 3 components vs time then plot acceleration vs velocity and multiply that function by the mass of the bullet and thus giving us the force on the bullet as a function of velocity.  This will yield the drag coefficient.   Reality: The glass shattered from the pressure of the bullet as soon as it entered the tank.  The high speed footage was able to capture the bullet’s path well but the refraction of the light from the bending and breaking glass made it hard to get data in some places. Fairly reliable data was still determined.  Our original model did not work well because by the time we got to the second derivative our error factor was reasonably large.  We changed our analysis to use an existing model for drag and with that change the drag coefficient until we find a curve that matches the position graph. we are at that point in our analyzing.      




Poster B: Social Science MC Ballroom A 4:30-6pm

1. A Correlational Study: Knowledge of the Twilight and Relationship Expectations and Perceptions

Katie Walter & Jeremy Thorson - Psychology

This proposed study wishes to take the cultivation theory(George Gerbner)and apply it to the movies of the Twilight series and to study a demographic that has not been studied much before. Our hypothesis states that individuals who view the Twilight movies and consume the material found in the books are affected and thus relationship perception is skewed.
The research subjects for this particular study will include BYU-Idaho students.The instrument that we used included the Ideal Characteristic Questionnaire (Gibbons) and questions we formulated about the Twlight series.The inventory included demographic questions, questions related to the Twilight series, and questions related to the participant’s perceptions towards dating relationships.
The design used in the experiment will include a non-experimental observational study. The design type is a random one sample t-test.The discussion will function as a type of priming, for the participants to come to a further conclusion about their opinions.
Advertisement through posters and flyers on campus, through word of mouth, and also through General Psychology professors was the means by which we obtained our participants. A large group discussion was held on March 10. We first handed out the informed consent form and then administered the questionnaire to the participants.

2. Consumer Analysis of Spending Habits

Nicholas Sorenson, Karleia Kerstetter, Zac West – Psychology
This is a research study for consumer information as it relates to the spending habits of BYUI students. Participants were asked to complete an online survey regarding shopping preferences and spending habits. The underlying assumption of this study is that students leave Rexburg because many of their consumer needs are not met locally. The purpose of our study is to let retail stores in our community to better service the needs of students. We sent out 400 e-mails for a simple random sample to collect data on our survey. The survey contains questions related to spending habits, choice of stores, and whether stores meet the needs of the students. Future research might involve holistic community spending to get a wider perspective to better the needs of the town.

3. Inspiring the Heroic Imagination:  A simple method to increase heroic action in college students

Brian Riches – Psychology

Can people be trained to be heroes? The heroic imagination project has been researching and developing training programs using psychological principles to train people to act heroically when the situation calls for it. Heroism requires a personal sacrifice or potential sacrifice that stops many people from acting heroically. We developed and tested a simple method to inspire the heroic imagination. We believe that giving people real life examples of situations requiring heroism in the form of quiz questions would cause them to think about how they would act in those situations and prime them for heroic action in a real life social situation. Subjects were taken from a Psychology 111: General Psychology class and using a quasi-experimental design we compare a control group to an experimental group to see if those who received the quiz with heroic items did act more heroically when their partner in a game of darts steals money from the opposing team. Results will be presented.


4. Are you really just one loose thread away from failure? First impressions: Discovering the factors that are observed upon first meeting

Kacie Birtcher – Psychology
Using two experimental groups, one with a male instructor the other a female; forty-three students volunteered to participate with approximately half in each group. After a brief introduction by their instructor, a survey was passed out asking them to recall details regarding the physical features and their overall impression of the instructor. The instructor was trained to exit the classroom during the survey. In reviewing the data, I discovered that clothing articles were recalled more accurately and consistently than other distinguishing factors, raising the importance of dressing appropriately for job interviews, meetings, etc.

5. Avoiding Motivation Fallout
Joseph Woods – Psychology
The main goal of this study is to determine a way to maintain inspiration/motivation long enough in order to act. The questions I am addressing are how can we hold on to the effects of the initial drive long enough to act? Is there a conscience method we can use in order to keep the fire or drive to act alive?
Methods: I will have a control group and an experimental group which will both be presented with the benefits of drinking the correct amount of water a day. I will ask the participants if they drink the correct amount suggested for good health. The control group will be presented with information regarding the health advantages of drinking water and the experimental will be given the same information with added training on how to internalize their motivation through a cognitive pairing of the color blue with the need to drink water. I will set up the research station a few feet from a drinking fountain and when the students continue walking I will observe if they stop to drink or not. I will also take email addresses as a follow up to see if they continued to drink more water then they had originally. Data will be presented with the study as well as results.

6. Explanatory style and the reception of religiously-based speeches
Michael Arnold – Psychology
People tend to explain events along dimensions of personal source, pervasiveness, and permanence.  Those who use an optimistic explanatory style have been shown to be more well received in the business, political, and educational realms.  It is hypothesized that an optimistic explanatory style will result in a more positive view by others in a religious setting.  82 undergraduates from BYU-Idaho were asked to complete a survey of how they responded to speakers at the school's weekly religious devotionals over a period of 3 weeks.  Speeches were analyzed for causal statements and rated on dimensions of optimism.  Students responses were then correlated with level of optimism.


7. Job Satisfaction at Work
Zac West – Psychology
Job satisfaction comes in many forms for different people. The purpose of this study is to measure those variables as they relate to students working campus custodial. There are six main categories being measured, namely: variety, autonomy, task identity, feedback, dealing with others, and friendship opportunities. Besides these variables part of using the custodial staff was to see how time of day affected satisfaction and social life of the students working. 

8. Adult acquisition of language in higher disciplines
 Michelle Backlund - Psychology

The purpose of my study is to show that oral reading facilitates the acquisition of learning in adults the language of a new discipline more quickly than by silent reading. Ho: Oral reading develops the ability to articulate a new discipline more quickly than silent reading. Participants  A non random sample of BYU-I undergraduate students male and female.  I used a paragraph from the GRE preparation materials and asked both groups to read it through 2 times. They reported to a room where they were asked to repeat back what they read using as much of the newly learn vocabulary as possible. They were scored according to a rating scale that gave points for exact verbiage and meaning based on a sliding scale.  The design was a non-random two-group post-test only design: Experimental group receives IV. IV = Experimental group were asked to read aloud only.  Control group read silently only. I used Independent Sample T test.    The results at this point are not all calculated but it is expected to have no significance. Possibly there will be indication that silent reading acquires language more quickly. Implication will depend on the outcome. However the acquisition of the language of a new discipline is important for all those entering a new field of study or in the application of employment. Most language acquisition studies are based on children of remedial ability. There seemed to be a difference in the ability of males vs. female language acquisition. This was not controlled for. Also the long term affects of oral reading could not be studied at this time. It was expressed by those that felt that learning was difficult for them that they would have done better if they had been placed in the oral group. Further testing could be done on those Adults exhibiting ADD tendencies.

9. Why Students Change Majors
Stela Risto, Rachelle Bird, Dion Risto - Psychology

            This research will investigate the reasons why people decide to change majors. Many studies have been performed around this area. Previous research has demonstrated that when a student decides to change  his/her major, most likely, the new major will be closely related to the previous one. We also found research that proved females were more likely to go into a social major, and men were more likely to pick a science major. But what takes students to the point of changing their major? In this study, in order to understand the reason or the main reasons, was used an e-survey method. The participants were randomly picked by a random number generator from a group of students of BYU-Idaho with the quality of having changed their major while studying at BYU-Idaho. For this survey we used questions like: On a Scale from 1 to 4, 1 being very little and 4 very much, how have these items affected your decision to change your major? And a few options were provided, for example: taking a class, wanting a higher future income, taking an Internship on the field of your previous major, changing marital status. After receiving the filled surveys, the Factor Analysis and Content Analysis was used to get to the results. The main findings of this study were that that three main factors influenced students’ decision to change their majors: Factor 1 combined listening to friends’ advice, and listening to family’s advice. Factor 2 combined wanting a higher income and doing an internship. Factor 3 combined being indecisive and having a baby. A limitation of this study was the fact that the students might have not felt free to mention the real reason of their decision to change the major. For future research studies could be done on the correlations between original majors and the majors the students change to.

Oral Sessions:

Oral Session A: Campus, Teaching & Learning:  MC 176A

1. 7:00pm  BYU-I Student Distribution from Campus
Robert J. Holman - Geology
A Geographic Information System (GIS) is used to analyze the spatial distribution of BYU-Idaho students in an effort to aid the University in decisions regarding campus parking. Geocoding, a tool used to assign geospatial coordinates to physical addresses, is the main tool used in the distribution analysis. Issuing parking permits based how far students live from campus will solve many of the current parking problems. This study provides a template for carrying out this process.

2.  7:15pm The Five Pillars of Attitudes in Physics Learning

Allison Saunders – Physics Education

Analyzing diagnostic tests can lead to some interesting discoveries. In the past we’ve compared the EBAPS, FCI, and Lawson tests to look for correlations between student scores with hopes for glimpses into promoting deep learning in physics. My research has been to break up the EBAPS into the five pillars it covers and compare them to the other diagnostic tests. It is my hope that by understanding how students assume where their knowledge comes from, we can help our students develop attitudes that would promote this kind of deep learning in physics.

3.  7:30pm
Assessing the Learning and Content in Foundations of Science Classes
Phillip Scott, Julia McKenzie – Physics
With the start of the new foundations curriculum at Brigham Young University— Idaho, there are many new classes offering a variety of content. As a university we need a way to monitor whether or not these classes are having the desired effect, and a way to find what understanding the students are gaining from these classes. We have designed a diagnostic test intended to accomplish these two goals. Our research focuses on what goes into the current diagnostic tests designed to understand these two issues and to use this knowledge to design a custom test specifically made for FD206 Light and Sound. We are doing this in an attempt to help us see whether or not students are learning and understanding the underlying principles of light and sound. This will hopefully have the ability to be adapted to a wide variety of foundations courses. It is our hope that this will help teachers understand how to better help students so that the foundations classes can be taught in the way that best helps students learn and grow.

4. 7:45pm Using Diagnostic Surveys to Assess More Than Knowledge
Jaren Olsen – Physics Education
With so much emphasis on high stakes tests in education, now is a great time to look at what tests actually measure.  There are ways to develop assessments that measure not only knowledge, but also attitudes towards learning.  Traditional tests measure what a student knows shortly after learning it.  This is effective for measuring short-term learning, but not an accurate indicator of whether the student will continue on and learn more later.  Many educational philosophies advocate teaching a man how to fish rather than feeding him for a day.  Why are we so focused, then, on assessing whether the student was fed for a day?  Shouldn't we also be assessing whether he knows how to fish and whether he wants to continue fishing after the final exam?


Oral Session B: Physical Science/Engineering: MC174B


1. 6:30pm  Exploration Potential in the Patchawarra Trough of the Cooper Basin
Robert Holman, Jason Dayley, Quincy Nickens, David Little,  Martell Strong – Geology
Development history for the southwestern portion of the Patchawarra Trough in the Cooper Basin, Australia suggests potential for additional hydrocarbon production. Evaluation of hydrocarbon potential requires an understanding of geological history, well log suites, and 3D seismic data.  The software package Petra was used to identify possible reservoirs, sources, and seals from well logs. Formations tops were picked from the logs and correlated to seismic reflections in the 3D data set.  Using the SMT Kingdom suite, 3D seismic data were used to interpret the character of subsurface lithologic packages.  A model was developed from these data to illustrate possible stratigraphic and structural traps, and analogs from outside the basin were identified and compared to our model to test its feasibility.

2.  6:45pm  Exploration Potential in the Patchawarra Trough of the Cooper Basin Part II
David Little, Martell Strong, Jason Dayley, Robert Holman, Quincy Nickens
The Patchawarra Trough in the Cooper Basin of southeastern Australia has three stacked traditional plays for hydrocarbon exploration. Traditional plays are primarily stratigraphic and target the Permian self-sourcing reservoir Patchawarra, Epsilon and Toolachee Formations. These plays are based on stratigraphic trapping of hydrocarbons in mud-encased channel sands. Minor four-way dip closures have been identified but are not economic by themselves. There is also significant potential for a shale gas play. An exploration well is recommended to be drilled in a four-way dip closure with stratigraphic traps in the Patchawarra Formation as the primary target. Core data from the well could be used to analyze shale gas potential.6:00pm  Positron Annihilation Spectroscopy (PAS)


3.  7:00pm  Jacopo Lafranceschina - Physics 

Using PAS techniques we try to scan and read a writing of the letters ‘BYUI’ off a Cu plate. In the following presentation we will be taking about the problems that we encountered, the solutions we have found, and the future progress that can be made on this project.

4. 7:15pm  Design and Modeling of a Spar for a Dynamic Soaring Glider Using a Tapered Composite Sandwich Beam
Brian Oswald, Kenneth Aycock,  Felipe Porto - Mechanical Engineering
In designing a spar for a dynamic soaring glider made from a tapered sandwich composite beam, mathematical tools were developed and refined. These tools helped design a spar to avoid failure in compression, shear, and buckling. They also assisted in predicting the deflection of the tip of the spar when subjected to an upward distributed load used to simulate flight. To assist with the design, a finite element analysis (FEA) model was also built. Validation of the tools and models was conducted with a 50-inch spar that began with a cross-section of 1 inch by 2.5 inches and tapered down to 0.5 inches by 1.25 inches. When tested, the spar deflected 9 inches and resisted a load of 572 lbs. These results were used to refine the design tools and FEA model. Use of the design tools and FEA model will help amateur remote-control glider pilots to design stiff composite spars for varying wing spans and weights.

5.7:30pm  Evaluation of Carbon Core Pellicular Particles for High-performance Liquid Chromatography
Salvador Gomez Gutierrez, Austin Beck – Chemistry
3-μm carbon particles coated with nanodiamond and polyallylamine (PAAm) through a layer-by-layer (LbL) technique, resulting in carbon core-shell pellicular particles were evaluated for use in high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The core-shell particles are simultaneously functionalized and cross-linked with a mixture of 1,2-epoxyoctadecane and 1,2,7,8-diepoxyoctane to create a mechanically stable C18-equivalent stationary phase. Previous work shows these particles to be considerably stable at high pH values (11.3 - 13) over extended periods of time. A comparison was made between a 3.0-cm column prepared with the above-described particles and a commercial 10-cm C18 column.  Components of an analgesic tablet (i.e., caffeine, acetaminophen, and aspirin) and subsequently a selected group of triazine herbicides were separated on both columns employing acetonitrile/water and methanol/water, respectively, mobile phases. Initial results are promising, yet separation efficiencies and resolution are considerably less than what can be achieved on the commercial column. Further evaluation and development are being considered.

6. 7:45pm  Reduced Graphene Oxide Thinfilms for Organic Electronic Applications
Cody V. Cushman, Marie Piiparinen – Chemistry
Reduced graphene oxide (RGO) thin films and composites have recently become an important research topic due to their potential applications as transparent, flexible conductors in organic electronics and photovoltaics. RGO is typically produced from expensive graphite sources such as highly oriented pyrolytic graphite (HOPG) or SP-1 graphite. This paper evaluates the usefulness of inexpensive graphite sources for the preparation of RGO. The main impurities of different graphites will be characterized before and after the formation of RGO. RGO films and composites will be prepared from graphene oxide (GO) suspensions. These materials will be reduced and patterned photochemically.  The chemistry of the oxidation and reduction of RGO will be characterized spectroscopically. The electrical performance, optical transparency and mechanical strength of RGO films will be evaluated, and the fabrication of simple RGO circuits containing conventional electronic components will also be investigated.



Oral Session C: Social Sciences: MC174A

1. 6:15pm  The Tweet is Mightier than the Wall: The Evolution of Political Dissidence in China

Timothy Ng – International Studies

From mooncakes to bamboo slips, and more recently from park walls to Twitter, Chinese dissidents have used a range of potent mediums to express to the authorities their discontent against varying injustices experienced, for over two thousand years. As the nation and civilization have developed over time, so have the dissident forms progressed in both eloquence and genius. But why does China especially, possess such a notorious history of domestic political dissidence, and what drives these individuals to risk their lives in their dissent? This study will investigate the minds and lives of these social critics, along with the evolution of their dissident techniques, analyzing their comparative efficacy throughout the ages. In addition, the research will highlight how contemporary digital activism is playing a major role in modern Chinese dissent, and speculate on how this 21st century approach to social criticism may finally weaken the seemingly unbroken line of China’s authoritarian governance, from imperial rule to the more recent communist regime and beyond.


2. 6:30pm  Effects of the United Potato Growers of Idaho

Gage Hart Zobell - Economics

The United Potato Growers of Idaho formed a cooperative under the Capper-Volstead Act to control price variance and to attempt to increase the real price of fresh potatoes.  Using regressional analysis from a constructed yearly and seasonal index, the effects of the cooperative are measured and compared to their goals.  The results have displayed a lowering of the demand for fresh Idaho potatoes with a decrease in the production and thereby consumption.  The real price of potatoes has been relatively unaffected, although the price variations have become relatively more smooth.  Ideas are presented on ways in which to lower the mitigation of the effects of the cooperative.


3. 6:45pm  Law School Debt
Trent White – Economics
With average law school graduate debt load recently surpassing the $100,000 mark and a sharp curb in legal employment across the country, law school graduates are increasingly finding themselves underemployed or unemployed with substantial debt burdens.  Ironically, the number of law schools and LSAT takers continues to rise.  This report analyzes the reality that law school graduates face and the importance of school rankings compared to tuition and other costs when deciding upon a potential law school.

4. 7:00pm  Plastic Currency
Rhett Morris – Economics
Traditional credit cards and debit cards have been evolving over the past decade to become a new form of currency that consumers are using in place of cash. Prepaid credit and debit cards are easy to obtain and function much like the traditional cards without the requirements of opening a bank account. These prepaid cards can be acquired at most convenience and department stores with nothing more than an ID. These cards are essentially M1 currency because of their similarities to cash and checks. The purpose of this project is to fill in the research gaps in the subject matter through a careful examination of financial markets. Data provided by the Federal Reserve Bank as well as the Bureau of Labor Statistics can help to identify where prepaid financial products are having the biggest effect. The growing market for these products also presents substantial changes to the banking market in the long run.

5. 7:15pm  A Movement Towards Capitalism
Matthew Huff – Economics
In this analysis the researcher seeks to determine the nature of anti-capitalist sentiment. Specifically, the analysis is meant to interpret and provide insight into the countercyclical nature of business cycles and anti-capitalist sentiment. This negative sentiment creates a burden on the progression of society regardless of the positive influence of capitalism in the lives of those it touches. Therefore, it becomes important to understand these relationships. The manner in which anti-capitalist sentiment is determined is through the use data of the increasing frequency of the term “greedy capitalist” used in all published materials in proportion of the total amount published. Specifically analysis is geared towards the determinants of when this percentage increases. Declines in real GDP are shown to increase this frequency which suggests that a relationship does exist.


6.  7:30pm  The Effect Of The Level Of Education Of The Mother On Infant Mortality Rates
Mariana Cecilia Salamanca-Cardona - Economics
This paper studies the effect that the level of education of the mother has on infant mortality rates while controlling for other factors that according to existing literature could also have a significant impact on infant mortality.  A crosssectional model with 134 observations for the year 2006 that corrects for heteroskedasticity was built. The adult female literacy rate was used as a proxy for the level of education of the mother and the results show that fertility rate, poverty rate, female participation in the labor force, the logarithmic form of per capita GNP, and female literacy rate have a significant effect on infant mortality rates. Unexpectedly according to the sample obtained, government expenditure on health-care as a percentage of GDP is not significant in determining infant mortality rates.

7. 7:45pm   How Quantitative Easing Impacts National Economies and How to Increase its Effectiveness
Sterling Rollins - Economics
Quantitative Easing (QE) predicts that an increase in a country’s monetary supply will have a positive impact on their economy and accomplish a specific goal of the national bank.  Japan implemented QE between 2001 and 2006 while the United States began in 2009 and has continued through the present time.  I examined the major stock market price changes, strength of currency, interest rates, change in GDP, and unemployment rates.  Japan experienced many positive economic outcomes during the use of QE but it was deemed a failure due to deflation continuing throughout the use of QE.  There have been many positive economic changes that have happened during the implementation of QE in the United State; however increasing loans to investors and consumers, the primary goal of QE in the US, has not occurred according to the Federal Bank in St. Louis.  Consumers and investors can increase their likelihood of receiving a loan by preparing financial documents, having collateral, and showing how a loan will be paid when applying for a loan.  Doing these steps will increase the effectiveness of QE in the United States.


Oral Session D: Art, Language& Letters:  MC 176B

1.  7:15pm  The Whale's Song: Jazz in Moby-Dick
Jeff White – English
Moby-Dick is rarely mentioned in the same sentence as jazz, but it does happen. In his lectures at Julliard, music historian Stanley Crouch links the novel to the music: “Moby-Dick is an improvisation where you observe Herman Melville following his ear though the book… . He has motifs, but they keep changing form.” Beyond thematic improvisation, other semblances suggest the association. The Cambridge Companion to Jazz defines jazz with four creative requirements. The musician employs 1) swing, meaning rhythm, 2) improvisation, 3) group interaction, and 4) individual voice (83-92). Surprisingly, Moby-Dick hits all of these notes. Melville, like the jazz artist, employs 1) lyrical, metric passages, 2) tangential, but thorough explorations of a single theme, 3) references to past scholars, writers, and artists, taking cues while elaborating, and 4) a narrative form unlike any other, thumbing the nose at the literature’s established traditions for “the novel.” Could Moby-Dick be harbinger to American jazz culture? It seems possible. The 20s, a decade we call the “Jazz Age,” happens to coincide with what literature scholars have determined to be “the Melville Revival.” Moby-Dick was written off in its time, but perhaps the whale was a tad, if not 70 years, too early.

2. 7:30pm   Freedom: A Study of the Illustrations in Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Sara Robertson – Theater, Elizabeth Anderson – English
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn has been the most controversial book, especially in school systems, since the time of its publication. Many critics have focused on the racial stereotypes portrayed through the writing and the illustrations included in the first edition. Peaches Henry asserts that the novel leaves Jim as a “stereotypical, superstitious ‘darky’” (33). E. W. Kemble’s illustrations have been strong evidence in this argument that Mark Twain emphasized racial stereotypes through his novel. However, Mark Twain understood the power of deliberate illustrations in his novel. Through a close examination of Jim’s facial expression, clothing and stance show a progressing difference in his status. Jim goes from the stereotypical portrayal of African-Americans, with the bug eye face and bowing to those in power, to reflecting the image of a caring and prestigious doctor.  This change demonstrates the dignity that is obtained through freedom and a discussion of the price of freedom.

3. 7:45pm  A Culture Convicted of Convictions
Kristine George - Education
Recently the university performed John Patrick Shanley’s play Doubt: A Parable.  The obvious question formed immediately following the play, ‘Is the priest guilty?’  Shanley responded, “You may come out of my play uncertain.  You may want to be sure.  Look down on that feeling. We’ve got to learn to live with a full measure of uncertainty.  There is no last word” (Preface).  Well, Shanley, I’d like to have a last word.  We can understand why Father Flynn left St. Nicholas school once we understand Althusser’s ideas of ideology and interpellation.  Louis Althusser, the 20th century French philosopher, said an ideology represents our relation to the world and “the stories we tell ourselves about what is real become what is real” (Klages 133).  He then said an ideology interpellates (“hails”) a subject.  Sister Aloysius, serving within a Christian ideology, hails Father Flynn a sinner, more specifically a molester, so he has no choice but to become subject to that hail regardless if he is guilty or not.  When we apply Althussarian theory to Shanley’s play, we begin to see how Sister Aloysius regards her doubt as certainty and how she has the power to ban Father Flynn from her school.    


Faculty Mentors:

Brian Pyper - Physics

Eric Gee – Psychology

Johann Delton – Psychology

Steve McGary – Agribusiness

Julie Willis – Geology

Rick Hirschi – Economics

Kerry Webb - Economics

Ryan Johnson – Economics

Jason Williams – English

David E. Brown – Mathematics

Evan Hansen – Physics

David Stowell – Mathematics

Ryan Dabell – Chemistry

Scott Cameron – English

David P. Johnson – Mechanical Engineering

Craig Johnson – Mathematics

David Collins – Chemistry

Todd Lines – Physics

William Little – Geology

Hector A. Becerril – Chemistry

Mark Lovell – Geology

Jaron C. Hansen, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Brigham Young University