UCI News

Smithsonian, July 5, 2016
One step closer to turning plastics into fuel
Chemist Zhibin Guan at the University of California, Irvine, and his collaborators have discovered how to break down the bonds of polyethylene. Polyethylene, the most commonly produced plastic on Earth, is found in everything from soda bottles to cling wrap, children’s toys to cosmetics containers. Since these plastics are petroleum-based, the team figured it might be possible to turn them back into fuels.

The Desert Sun, July 4, 2016
Scientists: California needs more groundwater data
Jay Famiglietti, the senior water scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena …. who is also a professor at the University of California, Irvine, said the study “points to the fact that we need a comprehensive, detailed hydrogeological exploration program, not only in California but in the other major aquifers of the United States.”

Face2Face Africa, June 30, 2016
Meet Constance Iloh: The professor making headlines and history in higher education
In January 2016, Constance Iloh made major waves as one of the only academics and scholars ever placed among the illustrious breakout talents, young entrepreneurs, and changemakers on the Forbes 30 under 30 list. Now Constance Iloh is making history at the University of California, Irvine, becoming its first Black tenure-track professor in the School of Education (a U.S. News & World Report Top 25 Ranked Graduate School of Education).

Quartz, July 3, 2016
Neuroscientists say multitasking literally drains the energy reserves of your brain
Gloria Mark, professor in the department of informatics at the University of California, Irvine, says that when people are interrupted, it typically takes 23 minutes and 15 seconds to return to their work, and most people will do two intervening tasks before going back to their original project. This switching leads to a build up of stress, she says, and so little wonder people who have high rates of neuroticism, impulsivity, and are susceptible to stress tend to switch tasks more than others.

Orange County Register, July 4, 2016
Boris Berian, Charles Jock complete unlikely journeys to U.S. Olympic track team
Not for Charles Jock, the former UC Irvine NCAA champion who now runs for the Oregon Track Club. … “Making this team has kind of been a validation for me,” Jock said. “Moving to Oregon, changing coaches as successful as I was in college. So making this team, I know I’m going in the right direction.”

SF Chronicle, July 1, 2016
SF’s minimum wage hike took effect July 1, but changes little
Since 2014, the minimum wage has risen 21 percent. Meanwhile, unemployment in San Francisco County has dropped from 5 percent to 2.9 percent. In the same period, the labor force has grown from 522,300 to 549,800. “There are trade-offs,” said David Neumark, economics professor and director of the Economic Self-Sufficiency Policy Research Institute at UC Irvine. Fewer jobs.

The Huffington Post, July 5, 2016
What’s the deal with ‘natural’ sunscreen?
There’s a lot of confusion surrounding sunscreens’ active ingredients, and even more confusion about which sunscreens are effective and which aren’t. “‘Natural sunscreen’ is not a term that dermatologists use,” Dr. Janellen Smith, a dermatologist at UC Irvine Health, told The Huffington Post.

Previously “In the News”