The Lindbergh Foundation Believes that Innovative Science and Technology Hold the Key to Addressing Humanity’s Environmental and Productivity Challenges

Examples By Category

Listed below are a few examples of funded grant projects in their respective categories. Many projects are multi-disciplinary. Click on the subject links to the left to take you to the desired category, or use our Search feature to locate other funded projects in your category.

These project descriptions summarize the work at the time grants were awarded so no final results or follow-up are addressed. It is our hope that you will find this list to be helpful as you prepare your project application, or to help you determine if your project is appropriate for a Lindbergh Grant.


Randy Gaugler (2003)
"Producing Biopesticides Through Local Cooperatives in Ethiopia as an Alternative to Using Harmful Chemical Pesticides"

Jorge Vivanco (2002)
"Developing a Safe Pesticide for Potato Farming from an Endangered Andean Crop"

Gary King (2000)
"Reducing the Adverse Impacts of Carbon Monoxide-Producing Agricultural Crops on the Atmosphere"


Lesley A. Weitz (2006)
"Reducing Fuel Inefficiencies and Noise Pollution from aircraft by Exploring the Wider Use of Continuous Descent Approaches at Busy Airports"

Dr. Mark T. Hernandez (1998)
"Balancing the Preservation of our Natural Environment with Mandatory Aircraft Deicing Practices"

Dr. Robert F. Davey (1996)
"Fuel-Efficient Propulsion for High-Speed Private Aircraft With Enhanced Safety and Reduced Atmospheric and Noise Pollution"
Throughout the past decade, major advances have been made in the performance of general-aviation aircraft through the application of improvements in aerodynamics, materials and structural design. However, these aircraft still rely upon engines based on sixty-year-old technology. Thus, the airplanes, while faster than their predecessors, continue to use leaded gasoline, emit high levels of atmospheric pollutants, and generate unacceptable levels of noise. This project will initiate the development of an entirely new type of engine which takes advantage of the improvements in technology made by the automobile industry, the advances in turbofan design made by jet-engine manufacturers, and a unique energy recovery technique which will improve the operating efficiency. The resulting engine system will be capable of operating at flight speeds in excess of 400 miles per hour, pollute no more than a conventional automobile engine, produce significantly less noise than current aircraft engines, and provide increased safety and reliability. It is hoped that these findings will serve as a stimulus for the development and marketing of commercial engines and that these engines will lead to the design of new, high-performance aircraft.

Dr. Richard Gilson (1979)
"Development of a Prototype Device for Visual Flight Simulation"

Conservation of Animal Resources

Dr. Tierney Thys (2000)
"Gathering Vital Baseline Data on the Giant Ocean Sunfish, Mola Mola, Using Satellite Tags and Global Genetic Analysis"

Gad Perry (1998)
"Using Snake Barrier Technology to Protect and Restore Pacific Island Endangered Species"
Dr. Perry was awarded funding in 1998 for his project addressing the Brown Tree Snake on Guam. Since its accidental introduction following World War II, this snake has devastated the Guamanian ecosystem. It has caused the disappearance of most vertebrates on the island, imposes a high economic burden in the form of frequent power outages, and is responsible for the occasional hospitalization of infants, bitten by this mildly venomous snake. It has caused the disappearance of nine of twelve species of native forest birds. Of the remaining species, one species is down to five individuals, another is down to 200 living in a single cave. Just as alarming as the impact to Guam is the potential for the Brown Tree Snake to spread to other locations. Using airplanes and boats for transportation, the snake stows away in luggage, cargo, and airplane wheel wells. Since Guam is a major transportation hub for the Pacific, the snake has spread to nearby islands such as Saipan and Rota, and more distant locations such as Hawaii, Japan, Texas, and Spain. This, despite the fact that over $1 million is spent annually to examine outgoing cargo and vessels for snakes. Unfortunately, no tools exist for eradicating the snake once it is established. To address the immediate problem, Dr. Perry developed three types of barriers located at ports and airports to prevent the snake from leaving Guam and to protect other Pacific islands from their entry. In this study, he will focus on the development of new types of barriers which can be used to protect natural areas as the previous barriers were designed for use only on flat, hard surfaces such as asphalt. It is hoped that these new barriers will be effective in protecting remaining endangered species and critical habitats on Guam and nearby islands.

Dr. Andrea Easter-Pilcher (1997)
"Alternatives for Wetland Restoration: Reintroduction of a Native Species to the Volga-Kama National Preserve in Kazan, Russia"
In the early 1800's beaver, native to the area of the Volga-Kama State Preserve in Tatarstan, Russia, were extinguished. The ensuing loss of biodiversity along with hydrological changes, such as alterations to the surface water patterns within the preserve, have been attributed to the removal of the beavers. The reintroduction of this native species will be instrumental in enhancing biodiversity and restoring the landscape to more original forested wetland conditions. This project will examine growing season field data and satellite data to investigate changes in landscape structure and function following the reintroduction of the beaver. Ecosystem changes at the landscape level including the re-distribution of water, changes in plant diversity, and activity of the reintroduced beavers will be monitored throughout the project. This research seeks to restore the natural character of the Volga-Kama preserve. The subsequent restoration will create equality between areas of high agricultural land use and areas of native biodiversity of the region.

Conservation of Plant Resources

Alberto Areces-Mallea (2000)
"Balancing the Preservation of Unique Cactus with Urbanization and Tourism in the Caribbean"

Daniel DeJoode (1998)
"Succession in Managed Forests: A Study of Sustainable Timber Harvesting and Conservation of Biodiversity on the Menominee Indian Reservation"
The global demand for wood products has resulted in utilization of vast tracts of forests throughout the world for lumber and pulp production. In the eastern U.S. over 98% of virgin and old-growth forests have been lost, and in the tropics, some estimate that the rate of deforestation is in the range of 15 million hectares per year. The Menominee Nation is widely recognized as a global leader in forest management, having practiced a well documented sustained yield management program for nearly 140 years. Unlike nearly all forests in the Great Lakes region (over 98%), the 100,000 hectare Menominee Forest, located in northeastern Wisconsin, has never been extensively clear-cut, although large quantities of timber are extracted through selective logging, making it a unique location for study. DeJoode will address theoretical aspects of succession (natural reforestation) as well as provide practical information on the impacts of forestry on natural ecosystems, especially plant species diversity. The project's aim is to contribute to sustainable forest management, thus enabling a more refined balance between the forest ecosystem (water, soil, plants, and animals) and the need to provide valuable wood resources and economic benefits for society.

Conservation of Water Resources

Lloyd Connelly (1998)
"Small-Scale Ultraviolet Water Disinfection for Rural Health and Resource Management: A Case Study in the Purepecha Highlands of Mexico"

W. Berry Lyons and Bwire Ojiambo (1994)
"Hydrogeological and Hydrogeochemical Study of the Southern Lake Naivasha Basin in Kenya for Sustained Environmental and Socio-Economic Development and Management"
Lake Naivasha is a shallow freshwater lake situated in the semi-arid Central Rift Valley region of Kenya. It is an extremely important lake from both economic and environmental points of view because of its diverse bird fauna, commercial and sport fishing, use by farmers for irrigation, and the electricity that is produced by a nearby geothermal power station believed to be fed by subsurface out-flow from the lake. Already, the change in the lake chemistry, dropping water levels and increased demands on the lake water resources have aroused environmental concern about the effects of the geothermal exploitation on the overall competition for lake water. Dr. Lyons and Mr. Ojiambo, a Kenyan scientist, will study and quantify the hydrologic mechanisms that control the subsurface outflow -- the main natural source of water loss from the lake -- for application in coordinated management of the lake water. Such study and management will be of great use to other regions of the world.

General Conservation

Robert Marquez and Dr. Antonio Lara (1999) - Air
"Preserving the Traditional Brick Kiln Way of Life While Reducing Air Pollution Using Innovative Low Technology"

Dr. Ernest R. Diedrich (1995) - Energy
"Balancing Energy Consumption with Resource Conservation: A Wind Power Study for Central Minnesota, an Educational Model for the World"
The hazards of nuclear waste, diminishing fossil fuel resources, pollution generated from oil and coal, and rising and unstable energy prices make imperative the search for alternative energy sources. This project seeks to preserve our natural environment and lead us to a more sustainable future by advancing the use of wind power technology. Wind power has long been recognized as a safe, reliable and clean energy source. Recent technological advances in turbine design have revolutionized wind power and made it affordable and more viable as an alternative energy source. The aim of this project is to expand the use of wind power technology in Central Minnesota, where wind speeds are somewhat lower and where the feasibility of wind power has not received much study. It will also involve the integration of the study of wind power generation into the educational curricula of the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's University, a model that can be replicated at other academic institutions.


Marion & Omri Behr (1993)
"Electronically Controlled Art Etching: Improving Artist Safety and Eliminating Hazardous Waste"
Etching is one of the oldest and most enduring art forms, developed over 400 years ago. The classical etching process involves coating a metal plate with a wax and cutting a design into the wax with a needle. The plate is then placed in an acid bath which eats into the metal wherever it has been exposed by the design in the wax. When a particular tone or tones are desired, a turpentine residue powder, called rosin, is deposited on the plate and is similarly eroded in acid. Prints are made by applying ink to the plate and then pressing paper onto it. Both the acid and the rosin are environmentally harmful as well as hazardous to the health of the worker, specifically irritating the eyes and nasal passages, and damaging to the lungs. Marion Behr, with her husband Omri, has developed a system which replaces the use of acid with low-voltage electric current exposing the crystal structure of the metal, eliminating health concerns for the artist and waste disposal problems associated with the chemicals. It is hoped that further development and adaptation of this new process will enable artists and students to pursue an art form which is presently restricted to locations with expensive ventilation systems and acid disposal facilities.

Carole Cornell (1990)
"Mexican Village Potters, Lead, and Health: A Balance Between Tradition, Safety, and New Technology"
The hazards of lead-glazed pottery have been known since antiquity, but, in the 20th Century, primary concern has focused on the consumer. However, in home workshops typical of Mexican cottage industries, the danger of lead poisoning for the producer is far greater than for the consumer. Moreover, in villages such as Capula, Michoacan, in west central Mexico, the hazard has grown worse as economic conditions have forced potters to expand production, thus increasing their potential exposure to lead four-fold. Efforts have been made to reduce the lead risk for both consumers and producers through the introduction of new technologies. Unfortunately, because of inadequate training for the potters, these technologies have often failed either to produce better ceramics or to protect the human environment. Carole Cornell, with the help of village potters and local health officials, will develop safety posters which focus on home workshop safety and the use of low-cost lead-protective equipment. She will also work with local school teachers to develop and implement a home safety and hygiene training program that could be adopted as a model for other pottery villages throughout Mexico.

Education/Intercultural Communication

Shalini Vajjhala (2003)
"Facilitating Environmental Decision Making by Integrating Local Hand-Drawn Maps and GIS Technology"

Sebastian Chuwa & James Harris (2000)
"Creating a Community-Based Program to Replant the African Blackwood Tree, Prized for Use in Carving and Woodwind Instruments, in Moshi, Tanzania"

Sonya Wood-Mahler (1992)
"'4-H Capture The Bay' - A Program to Teach Youth and Adults the Balance Between Coastal Development and the Marine and Coastal Environment"
Florida coastal counties are experiencing unprecedented growth and commercial development accompanied by severe negative impacts on the coast's fragile ecological system. The proposed educational program, "4-H Capture The Bay," will allow teachers, and other educators, and their students to participate in experiential hands-on learning strategies and curriculum resources addressing local coastal issues. More specifically, the program will allow teachers and students to: 1) develop new skills in group work and cooperative problem solving; 2) increase their knowledge of the marine environment and its interdependence with the human environment; 3) assess their personal values and behavior relative to conservation of the marine environment; and 4) increase their commitment to maintenance of a healthy marine environment. Long-term goals for the program include hopes that many of the 200 students and teachers participating in the activities would become better informed about, and become committed to involvement in, their community's development decisions now and in the future.


Dina Y. Venezky (1993)
"Exploration of Development-Based Groundwater Contamination in Wind Cave"
Wind Cave, located in the Black Hills of South Dakota, is an extraordinary natural phenomenon. In addition to being the sixth-longest cave in the world, with more than 72 miles of documented passages, it is also home to rare formations and organisms. Water that enters the ground from the surface has been forming Wind Cave for millions of years; however, the natural path of some of the groundwater has been diverted by manmade surface features such as a visitors center, parking lot, permanent housing, and a campground. This has caused some areas of the cave to become dry, which prevents further cave development, while other areas receive much more water, which enhances development. Initial studies have shown movement of contaminants through the explored cave areas. In order to study more fully the effects of surface developments on the cave, Dina Venezky hopes to determine through further exploration whether or not the cave exists beneath these developments, and if so, set up additional monitoring stations which would result in information on the sources and concentrations of contaminants. The project's goals are to preserve the rare natural resources of the area and increase our understanding of how groundwater moves through geological formations.

Health/Biomedical Research

Andrea & Donald Stierle (1998)
"A Gift From the Sea: A Marine Microbe that Balances the Need for New AIDS Drugs and the Necessity to Protect Delicate Reef Ecosystems"
It is estimated that over 20 million people world wide are HIV-positive and that by the year 2000 over 100 million people may be infected. Furthermore, there is evidence that the disease is becoming even more aggressive. This points to the importance of the search for new, effective, anti-AIDS drugs. The Stierle's search for new drugs reaches all the way from the mountains of Montana to the marine sponges growing on the coral reef of Bermuda. Sponges produce many disease-fighting natural products, which is not surprising when one realizes that these animals depend upon chemicals produced by their own bodies for defense from predators and for communication. Unfortunately, the most active and desirable of these potential drugs are often produced in very small quantities requiring large collections of the sponges that produce them. These large collections can threaten the coral reef and the potential drug source itself. Fortunately, bacteria living inside the sponges can also make active compounds. These bacteria can be grown in the lab as needed, saving the reef from potentially harmful re-collection efforts. The Stierles' have isolated a compound from a sponge bacterium that has shown promising activity against HIV in preliminary tests. Lindbergh Grant funds will be used to further test this compound as a possible anti-HIV/AIDS drug.

Health/Health & Population Sciences

Edgardo Moreno and Bruno Lomonte (2000)
"Discovering Alternative Antibiotics from Venom Obtained from Tropical Snakes in Costa Rica"

Steven Schipani (1999)
"Integrating Home Gardening in Northeast Thailand to Prevent Malnutrition"
In rural Thailand, vitamin A and iron deficiency continue to compromise human immune response, inhibit the physical growth and cognitive development in children, and increase the risk of health complications during pregnancy. The foods that prevent these conditions were traditionally obtained from home gardening, but rapid modernization has led many farmers to abandon this practice, resulting in an imbalance between the family's nutritional needs and their farming practices. Through this research, Mr. Schipani will explore the relationship between farm families who currently practice integrated gardening -- defined as vegetable cultivation, aquaculture, and small animal husbandry in addition to wet rice production -- with their consumption of micronutrient rich foods and indicators of their nutritional status. The expectation is that families practicing integrated farming consume more vitamin A and iron rich foods than similar families who purchase their food from retail markets. A demonstration of the nutritional and health benefits from this agricultural practice for rural Thai families will strengthen the scientific basis for national food and nutrition policy making.

Waste Minimization and Management

Prof. Robert Dell (2006)
"Harvesting and Re-circulating Surplus Heat to Warm the Soil of Small Urban Gardens in New York to Accelerate Plant Growth and Extend the Growing Season"

Dr. Gennaro J. Maffia (2003)
"Using Collagen Fibrils to Economically Recover Ethanol Fuel Produced During Fermentation Processes"

Andrew Cao and Stephen Jerrom (2000)
"Diverting Discarded, Recyclable Glass Away from Landfills by Making Glass Tiles for the Consumer Market"

John Meister (1996)
"The Use of Tree Lignin, a By-Product of Paper Manufacturing, in the Production of Tires"
During the paper manufacturing process, one-quarter of the tree, the lignin, is extracted and burned. This project will develop an altered lignin (the second most abundant polymer produced by living things on earth) which could be used in tire production, reducing the demand on fossil fuels and fully utilizing harvested trees while reducing waste released into the air. Altering the properties of lignin by attaching a component of tire rubber will allow lignin to be incorporated into tires as a reinforcing filler and a replacement for carbon black, a petroleum product. The results of this project could be used to promote further collaborative development of lignin-reinforced tire rubber with rubber manufacturers.

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