Friday, December 2, 2016

More sediment slugs, waves with our new CC media.

Today we did another three-hour with our new, finer, color-coded media.

The video and lighting are rough, but focus on the patterns; I see waves yet again, and some interacting with bank failures.  But also the bank failures might be caused by the passage of the slugs!

This finer media is more cohesive, and for that, and other reasons, displays very different behavior from our courser color coded media.

Dec 2 2016 new media run from Little River Research on Vimeo.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

River sediment "slugs" and waves visualized, for the first time?

Honestly, I'm way behind on the literature, but I know that we've all pictured sediment "slugs" and such from our field observations, at least since the late 1980's.  Maybe it's been described, but I doubt visualized before now.

So here's a placeholder. 

I've seen these pattern in our models for years.  We've recently developed a finer color-coded media that shows them more strongly.  Here's a short, rough, demonstration.

We're able to build the models, but have no funding now for research using them; I hope you'll do this!

Sediment waves/slugs visualized in an Emriver model from Little River Research on Vimeo.

One Year Anniversary at LRRD's New Location

November 17, 2016 was the 1-year anniversary of our move to our new location at
550 N. University Ave. in Carbondale. The new space has been perfect for us!

Beth's first day in the office.

Moving the shop. Couldn't drive a forklift around the old building!

Lots of storage space.

Science Agora Japan

Little River's Akiyo and Go Matsumoto displayed an Emriver Em2 at Science Agora in Japan in November (Agora is greek for "gathering place"). Science Agora "is an open arena for people from different sectors who desire a future society harmonized with science."  

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

An Em2 goes to China

We shipped an Em2 to Guangzhou yesterday - our third model in China.

Monday, October 3, 2016

LRRD at GSA 2016.

We started selling our geomodels in 2006, and in 2008 exhibited at GSA for the first time.  Everything went to Houston in a Subaru!

We now have nearly 300 models worldwide, in 15 countries.

We're old hands at GSA, and I drove a truck to Denver with an Em4, Em3, and Emflume1 for our booth.

Thanks to Beth, Parker, Brooke, Shane, and Erin for much hard work.  This meeting was marked by dozens of existing Emriver users visiting; we love that.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Visit Little River at GSA Denver

If you'll be at the Geological Society of America's 
fall meeting in Denver next week, we hope you'll visit us in the exhibit hall at booth #243.

We'll display our Emriver Em4 and Em3 stream tables, and our desktop-size Emflume1 model.
Exhibit hall hours:
Sunday, Sept. 25: 2pm-7pm
Monday, Sept. 26: 10am-6:30pm
Tuesday, Sept. 27: 10am-6:30pm
Wednesday, Sept. 28: 10am-2pm

We hope to see you there!

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Orlando. Words from my friend Monk San.

By Steve Gough.
Monk San is a friend of mine who was born in Sri Lanka and became a Buddhist monk there as a teen; his mother is still there and picks tea for a few dollars a day.  Here he is with my wife, Kate, who brought him to Carbondale to visit her Buddhist group.  Two people I admire very much.
He's a Buddhist monk who's broken from his tradition by leaving his monastery and traveling.  He's in a lot of trouble for that.
English is not his first language.  I was moved by his comments; posted on Facebook, and share them here.  His words take careful reading, please do that.
You can find him here on Facebook.
I am a Buddhist monk living in America and currently have a job as a live in caregiver. Guess what? My client is a lesbian couple. The woman I am taking care of has a Ph.D. she is an intelligent, kind and woman unlike those hypocrite idiotic straights( I meant the ones who has no sympathy or kindness towards who struggles to be who they are. Not to be confused with the ones that already accepting and kind.). When I talk to her, I see a kind, compassionate and a patience human being.
At this point, I am not sure whether I should be angry or sad about the Orlando incident. I am also embarrassed to introduce myself as a monk because the hypocracy behind a robe or name of a God is appalling. In my opinion, every single cleargy men and women in religious traditions current and in the history responsible for these type of crimes. We worship unknown, and unseen realities rather than embracing what is real in front of us.
People who try to politicy these incidents for their advantages should be ashamed and prevent from get into power. Nobody can resolve these issues but us humans. At the end love wins. Buddha, Jesus or Mohammad can do nothing but as individuals we can.
Our responsibility is not just about donating blood or money to organizations when things happen but understanding how to prevent these crimes from happening over and over again. Many of our problem is that this will be forgotten as soon as media stop talking about it. We should unite. Be freinds with each other. Start with a smile with a stranger who has a weird looking dress on or a person who has a manly voice yet dress up like a woman. Have a conversation.
We have to come together to help each other. Religions didn't find us, we found religions. Don't let them manipulate you and brain wash you. They want you because they want to run their organizations, small or big projects they do. Have your temple, mosque and church in your heart. Don't let a script old thousand of years good you, be your light, let your kindness guide you and clear your path. Be a light to the world being a light to you.
Yes, I am angry and sad. This unorthodox monk apologize to all the people around the world who has to hide because of these hypocrites. Much love to all the families affected by this horrible incident. Much love and many blessings.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Japan Geoscience Union Meeting a Success

Akiyo and Go Matsumoto were busy last week representing Little River at the Japan Geoscience Union annual meeting in Tokyo. Their booth, featuring an Em2 with color-coded media, was extremely popular.


Akiyo has been working hard selling models in Japan, and recently she assisted at a dedication ceremony for the Em2 at the Hamamatsu Science Museum during their 30th anniversary celebration.

That's Akiyo with the mic. She's a natural and a pro at engaging audiences!

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Understanding the life expectancy of our natural resources

Editor’s Note: This post was written by Little River’s new Research Assistant Brooke Hagarty.  Brooke is a Masters student in Forestry at SIU. She also received her B.S. in Forest Hydrology, with a minor in Soil Science, from SIU. Her background includes being a Nature Instructor and Camp Counselor at the local Camp Ondessonk, and a Graduate Teaching Assistant at SIU. Her love of science, nature, and teaching help her fit right in at LRRD, conducting research and speaking to clients about how our river models can help improve their teaching and research.

At a Universities Council on Water Resources (UCOWR) seminar on Southern Illinois University’s Carbondale campus last week, Dr. Richard Cruse gave a presentation titled “SOIL AND WATER: Resources with Decreasing Life Expectancy?”  The presentation was eye opening; I am happy to have attended.

Dr. Richard Cruse is the director of the Iowa Water Center, and a Professor of Agronomy at Iowa State University.  He has a heavy background in agriculture, and gave an effective speech on how we are degrading our resources at an alarming rate, in turn threatening food and water security.

There were a lot of numbers and predictions in the seminar, and some of them really stuck out.  He gave some daunting figures for the increase of meat production (mostly cattle) necessary to feed the growing world population and the growth of the middle class.  Predictions estimate that by 2030, 3 billion people will move from the lower to the middle class.  Cruse said that to fulfill the meat demand of the increased middle class, an additional 1 million cattle must be harvested per day.  With increased meat production, there must be increased corn production to feed the livestock.  The more corn production, the more water we use and soil we deplete, as already observed worldwide with the depletion of aquifer levels and farmable soil.  
Currently, Cruse and his colleagues are estimating daily soil loss through the entire state of Iowa using LiDAR data.  Cruse said soil formation occurs at an approximate average of 0.5 tons/ac/year. By averaging the LiDAR data across the state, they found that 5.7 tons/ac/year of soil are lost.  That means the amount of soil lost is an order of magnitude greater than the amount of soil produced in a year, which increases the costs of soil erosion. By losing the topsoil from the field, nutrient application must increase to sustain crop productivity, which leads to a spiral of detrimental effects in our waterways. 

I think my favorite part of the seminar was when Cruse talked about “ownership by convenience.” He said if you ask a farmer if it would be okay to dump a bag of trash on their land, you would expect the farmer to say no, that is their soil. But if you then ask the farmer, “So when the soil erodes from your land and pollutes my waterway, then is that still your soil?” you can expect the farmer to fall silent. At Little River, we promote teaching concepts such as these with our stream tables. They demonstrate river morphology phenomena that cannot be easily observed in the field. This is one of the many advantages to viewing fluvial processes in the compressed temporal and spatial scales of the Emriver models. In addition to education, the UN also provides some solutions to what can be done, including improving technologies and using less water to produce more nutritious food for the world.

As the world population grows, our knowledge of and proper management practices for natural resources must grow too. It is crucial that we teach people how to sustainably manage water and soil and how natural systems such as rivers work in order to increase the life expectancy of our resources.


Several agencies and organizations in Vermont use the Emriver models to teach landowners and policy makers about sound natural resources management. 

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Em2 at Japan's Izu Peninsula Geopark

Another Emriver Em2 has made its way to Japan. The Izu Peninsula Geopark had its grand opening for a new museum - called Georia - on April 2nd where the Em2 was on display. The stream table also made the local news. This clip talks about the new museum and how it will have more than 60 displays. 

Izu Peninsula Geopark is one of dozens in the Japan Geopark NetworkThere is also a network of geoparks around the world. UNESCO defines a geopark as containing one or more sites of particular geological importance, intended to conserve the geological heritage and promote public awareness of it, typically through tourism. 

Our geomodels are ideal for these settings because they can engage a variety of age groups by allowing hands-on interaction and visualization of how rivers work and how to conserve them.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

REAL using an Emriver Em3 at Harvard.

Not long ago, we sent an Em3 to this amazing lab.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Emriver Em3 Stream Table Proves an Effective Teaching Tool at Illinois High School

We're happy to see Hinsdale Central High School make the news recently, talking about how effective their new Em3 is for teaching Earth Science. I think two students summed up the model's benefits perfectly:
"Sophomore Will Goebel said using the interactive river table is more fun than "looking at boring textbooks and pictures."
"Even if we learned it in the book, we understand it better this way," said Alek Malone, a Hinsdale freshman."
You can also see an example of the Em3 in action at a class hosted at Little River's lab in Carbondale, IL.
An hour with an Emriver Em3 from Steve Gough on Vimeo.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

For Sale or Lease: 514 East Main in Carbondale, Illinois

After a great eight-year run in this building, we’ve moved to a bigger one.

For sale $195,000, we'll consider leasing.

--4,500 square feet
--All level concrete floors with garage door entry
—Truss design; any internal wall can be removed/moved

—Less than 1/2 mile from SIUC campus
—Four blocks to downtown Carbondale.
—Earth sheltered with thick concrete walls on three sides, very solid and secure.
—Faces Highway 13 in Carbondale; the busiest road in town.

—Southern exposure; great light and perfect for solar installation.
—Parking for 16+ cars, easy access.  Plenty of free parking nearby.

—New 30-year metal roof installed by Baine Roofing.
—New, state of the art sun tunnel lighting.
—New HVAC, great insulation and energy efficiency.
—Ground-level access with garage door, and level concrete floor.
—Well-maintained and updated electricals, including three-phase access.
—Underground cable Internet.

This building should be maintenance-free for many years.

Baine Roofing installing metal roof in 2012.

We have updated and fixed all major mechanicals, this building should be maintenance free for many years. 

2008  just after after we moved in.

Contact Steve Gough at, Beth Fisher at, or Bob Davenport at (618) 924-3644.