AIF User Wins Second Place in 2020 Envisioning Research Contest

Each year, the Graduate School, Office of Research and Innovation, Office of Undergraduate Research, NC State University Libraries, and University Communications and Marketing awards thousands of dollars to the Wolfpack community in the university’s annual research image contest, Envisioning Research

The Four Categories in Envisioning Research Contest

Graphics & Data Visualization



Video & Interactive

This year, one of AIF’s users, Sarah Orr, won second place in the Microscopy category. Her image, “Chloride cells on the abdomen a mayfly larva, Neocloeon triangulifer,” is a stunning image of mayfly larvae. Aaron Bell, AIF’s Bio Electron Microscopy Staff Scientist, helped Sarah with this image. 


Sarah is a third year PhD student in the Toxicology Program working in Dr. David Buchwalter’s lab. She received her BS in Biology from the University of North Georgia and her MS in Biomedical Sciences from Mercer University. Her current research aims to understand aquatic insect physiology in response to salinization of freshwater ecosystems. She hopes to continue her academic career after graduation with a postdoctoral position and eventually become an assistant professor with her own research lab. In her free time, Sarah enjoys traveling, trying new craft beer, and hanging out with her orange cat, Cheeto. Please email her at with any questions. 

The mayfly larvae were fixed in glutaraldehyde and osmium tetroxide, followed by an ethanol dehydration series and finally infiltrated with HMDS before air drying. The larvae were then mounted on SEM stubs and sputter coated before imaging in a Hitachi S3200N SEM. 

Aaron Bell