Explore cutting edge science topics, their latest developments, and their relevance to society through speaker presentations followed by question-and-answer period with the audience.


Winter/Spring 2024 Science Inquiry Series

Join us for our line-up of speakers for the Winter/Spring Science Inquiry Series.

Dr. Angela Des Jardins offers a preview of the upcoming “Great American Eclipse” in April and the effort of college students across the country to document it using high-altitude balloons.  Dr. Michael Reidy talks about the interplay of mountaineering and science in advancing important scientific issues.  Cassi Knight explains how dinosaur fossils are prepared for display and study and what plant fossils tell us about past climate.  Dr. Krishna Rupavatharam shares current research on photonics—the science of light—and its practical applications.  And Dr. Paul Nugent relates how the application of science and technology is improving yields in “precision agriculture.”  Check the Upcoming Presentations page for dates and details, and look below for news of the upcoming talk in the series.


Science Inquiry Series Explores Science at High Altitude

How has the sport of mountaineering fundamentally transformed scientific knowledge?  Dr. Michael Reidy, Chair of the MSU Department of History and Philosophy, will address this question in the second presentation of the Winter/Spring 2024 Science Inquiry Series.

The talk will be presented in the Museum of the Rockies’ Hager Auditorium on Wednesday, February 21, at 6 pm.  It is sponsored by the Gallatin Valley Friends of the Sciences, co-sponsored by the non-profit community service organization Hopa Mountain, and hosted by the Museum of the Rockies.

The series explores cutting edge science topics, their latest developments, and their relevance to society through speaker presentations followed by questions from the audience.  The talks are free to the public, with seating on a first-come, first-served basis.  Face masks are recommended but not required.

Images courtesy of M. Reidy/Pixabay

In his presentation, titled “Science at High Altitude,” Reidy, a historian of science, will discuss how the advent of mountaineering in the nineteenth century helped direct the sciences of evolution, geology, and meteorology by turning mountains into vertical laboratories.  He will explain how the relationship between mountaineering and science continues to direct the understanding of ecology, high-altitude physiology, and climate science, and how MSU and the Bozeman community are contributing to exciting developments.

Dr. Reidy holds a Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota.  He is the author or co-author of several books and is the General Editor of a project to publish the correspondence of 19th-century mountaineering physicist John Tyndall.  He teaches courses on the history of modern science, and his current research focuses on how the sport of mountaineering transformed the practice of science in the 19th century.

The presentation will be followed by a question-and-answer period.


Keep up on the world of science with this feature offering links to selected online articles in a variety of disciplines.

February’s Featured Article:

From Mental Floss:
Fifteen of History’s Greatest Mysteries

For additional article links, click on the “Science Link” tab above (under the banner).


Photo by SpaceX on Unsplash.

Click on the “Initiatives” tab above (under the banner) to learn about current science-based initiatives.  Current topic: climate change.

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