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Funding for scientific research has been curtailed since the last of the 2010 stimulus money was allocated. Scientists are now taking cues from social media to eliminate the bottleneck of government grants: they're asking the beneficiaries of scientific research to subsidize their work.
Australian astronomers @TeamMopra launched a campaign to save the Mopra telescope in New South Wales, Australia. Their mission is to chart the Milky Way.
Biologists from the University of Washington are researching a testing protocol for marine biotoxins. (When eaten, contaminated shellfish "can cause illness in humans. This biotoxin affects the nervous system and paralyzes muscles, thus the term 'paralytic' shellfish poison." High levels of PSP can cause severe illness and death. Lab on a Strip has reached 84% of its funding goal.
A chemist and an atmospheric scientist affiliated with the University of Washington completed a study which determined the cause of unusually high concentrations of ground-level ozone in Utah's Uintah Basin.
Depending on the scope of your research, the funds available via crowd sourcing may not fully support your project. However, the campaign to fund the Uintah Basin project supported the necessary field work. The Mopra Kickstarter campaign surpassed its goal.
For more information, visit Kickstarter and Experiment.