Mad Scientess Jane Expat (nanila) wrote,
Mad Scientess Jane Expat

Day 214/365: Dreamwidth visits the lab

This is me and Spanish Colleague, at Polish Colleague's leaving do last week. I'm putting this up because it feels like a long time since I posted a photo of myself in nice clothes. I love this dress. The bloke bought it for me at MadChique, a boutique just on the edge of the red light district in Amsterdam.

The rest of this post's content is unrelated to the photo. Sorry/not sorry! Yesterday, one of my Dreamwidth circle brought their daughter to London. Said daughter is about to start secondary school and likes science. We (daughter and I) have been corresponding periodically for a couple of years, and I thought it would be nice for her to visit the lab and see science and engineering in action.

They arrived just after noon and so got to experience the utter randomness that is the lab's lunchtime conversation, as well as being introduced to all of the lab members who aren't currently on holiday. One of the more flamboyant undergraduates currently doing a summer research project with us dropped an f-bomb. (He sends his profuse apologies, DW friend.)

Then we went downstairs and got a proper lab tour underway. Daughter got to see the Solar Orbiter qualification model sensor being tested with its spacecraft simulator, and the JUICE breadboard model electronics being tested with its spacecraft simulator. Daughter got to see the JUICE engineering model sensor being put into the thermal chamber and heated up. Daughter got to see the breadboard electronics for the Radcube instrument (Radcube is a CubeSat, so very small) being tested. Everyone in lab was very happy to talk to a keen young person about what they do, and Daughter seemed keen to absorb all they had to say.

Daughter also got to see our cupboard full of Space Junk. Well, some of it is space junk, like the charred bits of the Cluster I instruments we built. The four Cluster I spacecraft exploded 35 second after launch, and pieces of it were subsequently fished out of the swamps of French Guyana by some (presumably very disgruntled) French foreign legionnaires. The four Cluster II spacecraft have been in orbit around the Earth since 2000 and are still producing science data 18 years later. The non-space-junk includes scale models of various spacecraft we've build parts for, and flight spares, and the bit of glass subjected to deep dielectric discharge, leaving a pattern that looks like a frozen lightning strike.

All too soon it was time for Yet Another Telecon, so I escorted my visitors downstairs lest they get trapped forever in the rabbit warren that is our building. They said goodbye and went off to enjoy the nearby Science Museum and Natural History Museum unhindered by overenthusiastic scientists. Fingers crossed we made a good impression!

This entry was originally posted at The titration count is at comment count unavailable.0 pKa.
Tags: cluster, juice, london, meatspace, outreach, project, project: 365 posts, solar orbiter, vanity, work

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