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ByTom MillerThe Secret Life of Scientists and EngineersThe Secret Life of Scientists and Engineers

Click here for Tom’s profile.

Food Technologist Tom Yang works for the U.S. Army and he makes amazing stuff – food that lasts up to three years, even in places where the temperature regularly climbs over 110° F. As Tom says, he wants the soldiers who eat his food to feel like it’s “mom-cooked.” And the fact of the matter is that it does taste pretty good. I’m not particularly a fan of beef jerky, but if I’m going to eat jerky (instead of just being jerky), I’ll eat Tom’s military ration jerky. It’s tasty and less salty than the kind you get at the Quik-E-Mart.

By night, Tom Yang is a GANGSTER.

Now in our infinite “Secret Life” wisdom, we decided to premiere Tom right around Thanksgiving because we figured he uses science to make food… and what do people do on Thanksgiving? Eat ridiculous amounts of food! And what do people do after Thanksgiving? Eat ridiculous amounts of food! Nothing like a leftover turkey (or for that matter – jerky) sandwich after you get back from the carnage at the mall.

So there’s the food.

Original funding for "The Secret Life of Scientists and Engineers" was provided by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.