Mobile showcase to spotlight UF research for Capital One Bowl

Published: December 21 2007


GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The University of Florida has created a mobile showcase of UF research that will be located at various venues in Orlando in the days preceding the Capital One Bowl Jan. 1. The research display includes:

  • Air-cooled shoulder pads — Temperature Management System air-cooled shoulder pads use chilled water to cool players while on the sidelines. Developed by Dr. Nik Gravenstein, a UF professor and chairman of anesthesiology, the shoulder pads are used by UF players and many NFL and college teams. The technology is being translated into systems to help firefighters and soldiers stay cool. For more information, visit
  • Robotic car — NaviGator, a self-driving vehicle created by the UF College of Engineering’s Center for Intelligent Machines and Robotics, competed in the 2007 Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA, Urban Challenge. The car has been completely redesigned since the model used in the 2005 DARPA race across the Mojave Desert. For information on the 2007 race, visit
  • Model of the world’s largest telescope — The UF Department of Astronomy has partnered with Spain and Mexico to build and operate the world’s largest telescope, located in La Palma, Canary Islands. Referred to as Gran Telescopio Canarias, or “Great Telescope Canary Islands,” the 10.4-meter mirror telescope will offer an unprecedented view of the heavens. UF is the only U.S. partner on the project. For more information, visit or contact Steve Eikenberry, , 352-392-2052.
  • Gatorade — Possibly UF’s best-known research, Gatorade Thirst Quencher sports drink was invented at UF in the mid-1960s for the Gators football team. Inventor Dr. Robert Cade died in Gainesville on Nov. 27 at the age of 80. For more Gatorade information, visit or .
  • Alligator research — (A live alligator provided by SeaWorld will be on display ONLY at the Jan. 1 Gator Jamboree at FanFest adjacent to the stadium, 10 to 11 a.m.) UF is a leader in alligator research, including the work of distinguished zoology professor Lou Guillette and his associates. Guillette is internationally recognized for his research examining environmental contaminants and reproductive/endocrine disruption in various wildlife species, and policy work in human public health. He has served as an expert witness to the U.S. Congress and as a science policy adviser to various governmental agencies regarding environmental contamination and health. His recent work examines the effect of pollutants on the development of the ovary and testis in wildlife, especially alligators in Lake Apopka, near Orlando. For more information, visit .

The schedule for the mobile showcase is as follows:
Sunday, Dec. 30
2:30 – 4:30 p.m. – J.W. Marriott Grande Lakes, 4040 Central Florida Parkway, Valencia Terrace. (Rain location: Convention Porte-Cochere.)

Monday, Dec. 31
10:30 a.m. – 2 p.m. – J.W. Marriott Grande Lakes, 4040 Central Florida Parkway, Valencia Terrace. (Rain location: Convention Porte-Cochere.)

Tuesday, Jan. 1
9:30 – 11:30 a.m. – FanFest Jamboree adjacent to the stadium.

Susan Stewart, 352-846-3903 (w), 614-975-0063 (mobile),
Janine Sikes, 352-846-3903 (w), 352-745-1346 (mobile),