This month, as part of our special on the future of education, PopSci presents 10 labs where students do serious research (and career training) by blowing stuff up.Lab: DHS Center of Excellence for Explosives, Mitigation and Response at the University of Rhode Island
Career: FBI explosives expert, government defense contractor
Car bombs, improvised explosive devices and pipe bombs—for students at the University of Rhode Island's energetic materials lab, those tools are as common as a hammer is to a carpenter. The lab, run by chemist Jimmie Oxley and supported largely by the Department of Homeland Security, offers the most diverse explosives curriculum in the U.S.
Star Trek introduced the world to a wide range of fictional technology, most of which, like beaming or warp drive, will likely remain fiction. However, a team of scientists from the University of Canada has taken the phaser, the show's famous stun-laser, out of the TV and into reality. Unfortunately, right now it only works on worms.