Baylor to Receive IRIS Active Earth Kiosk for Sciences Building

Nov. 9, 2009

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The Incorporated Research Institutes for Seismology (IRIS) has selected Baylor University to receive an Active Earth kiosk, which is an interactive computer-based museum-type display that provides a way to engage audiences with Earth science information without spending resources on a large exhibit. It consists of a customizable set of web pages about plate tectonics, earthquakes, volcanoes and tsunamis that runs in an Internet browser, but fills up the entire screen.

"I was very pleased to learn that we were chosen to receive an Active Earth kiosk," said Dr. Vince Cronin, professor of structural geology and director of Baylor's Center for Spatial Research (CSR). "The work we do with earthquake seismology, active tectonics and spatial analysis here at Baylor does not always have much visibility. This kiosk will help change that."

The kiosk is on loan to Baylor's CSR and will be installed on the fourth floor of the eastside elevator lobby in the Baylor Sciences Building. CSR also is registered to use the IRIS software to develop Baylor's own interactive kiosks, which the university can move to other spots on campus and to local schools. When IRIS reclaims its kiosk, Baylor will be able to replace it with the university's own similar kiosk.

"The kiosk and the supporting displays we will develop around it will help folks at Baylor connect with what is happening in the natural world in central Texas and beyond," Cronin said. "Anyone who visits the Baylor Sciences Building will be able to spend a few minutes at the kiosk and learn about natural events occurring around the globe, including volcanic eruptions, earthquakes and the progress of weather systems."

Cronin said the kiosk also will show a video of the installation of a seismograph station near Lake Whitney which is hosted by Baylor, and see a seismogram recorded by that instrument taken just a few minutes earlier.

The Active Earth kiosk should arrive at Baylor before the end of the year.

Media contact: Frank Raczkiewicz, Assistant Vice President of Media Communications, 254-710-1964.

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