Tuesday 20 February 2018

Warm superconductors

What happens if you have a superconductor and the helium supply fails? It gets super hot super fast. If that happens at the LHC, you get that huge explosion in 2008. Now, if you instead scale that down to Nuclotron values (~6 kA) it doesn't get nearly as violent, but it's still bad. So, we didn't run the SRC experiment... We got to peek into the accelerator to see how the conductor had cleanly shot out a chunk of solid metal, much like an apple corer. We also got to see the looong tricky path for the superconducting cable, i.e. it'll be a big job to repair. Let's hope they manage before the snow melts, and everybody is equally puzzled how that would affect accelerator operations when I mention it. So I won't explain it here :D

Still, got a few things out of the trip:

  • I realized how much I miss proper winters, the weak crap we get here in Germany just doesn't do it for me. I was the only one who laughed hysterically while plowing through 50cm of snow and then I walked to the institute with snow filled boots with a huge grin on my face (and in my heart). I was dreaming of cross country skiing every day.
  • I know what prepaid subscription to go for with my smartphone, so I can finally hang out with the cool kids. And stare into the void without talking. Hmm, nothing new then come to think of it.
  • Fixed some strange new DAQ integration bugs, computers are terrible.
  • I need to learn to make nice salads.
  • Taking small breaks from playing an instrument really does help, my first day of practice after coming back was immensely fruitful. Doesn't help the technical but def. the musical bits.

I feel my task now is to try to keep business trips to a minimum and "finish" things at work (hah!). Will go to Strasbourg again this spring, and maybe Norway in the summer, but that's "not personal, it's strictly business". No wait, the other way around.

Lights out!

EDIT 2018-02-23: Carpenter Brut! Ladder tease! Finally some proper new music, and I'm so glad I have my decent headphone setup for this. Ah yes, I made udon noodles tonight, quite hard work if one substitutes the stomping with hand kneading. I blasted that dough really hard with empty hands of fury (forgot to put CB on in the background :p ) and it turned out really nice, but I'll cut the noodles much narrower next time, they really blow up while cooking.

And in closing, the Nuclotron is already fixed! Waiting for some people to decide who goes when and then I'll be off once more I suppose.

Tuesday 6 February 2018

Wonderful toys

Toys are great, this is my newest one:

It's a DIY build, and I fortunately found Mechboards in the UK selling kits. And, err, don't mind the chaos on the Pro Micros, I was sent the wrong acrylic cases which I only noticed after I had soldered the four hidden switches + the Pros. Couldn't find a tin sucker :/ All that's left is to find the motivation to put Alt Gr somewhere, and to decide whether I should make my own homing marks (because I had to shift around the rows and the stock ones would end up on the wrong row) or buy a fresh set of DSA keycaps.

Going to Russia again on Sunday, hopefully this time to run the actual SRC experiment. Or rather, a new technique/setup in a suite of SRC experiments.

And that's it, have fun.