Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Here we call it the 10 meter

I have been at work for over a week here at the Pole. Mostly I have been in our lab space figuring out some issues with the compute stuff that I brought down with me. Soon I get to play with the big cryostat that I worked on all last year.
Here is a picture of when we first got off the plane and started walking toward the station.

Every day we walk over a half mile from our station to the telescope. I have been migrating from a day shift to more of a night shift the last few days and I like it quite a bit. The one problem is that we are all finding our own schedules and we can't seem to get together for foosball at the end of our work day.

Here is a group of us walking back to the station on a windy day. The temperature was only -10F, but the windchill has been up to -50 which really burns your cheeks. Especially if you are on a snow machine (south pole for snowmobile.)

The sun is still up all of the time here and it is quite bright. It has been very hard trying to take pictures when everything is completely white, but I finally got some pretty cool lighting by the telescope and snapped a few pictures. These pictures were actually taken at 10 p.m.

These are the first pictures that I have posted of the telescope and hopefully you can actually grasp the size of it. There are a few people in the picture for scale. Our main mirror is 10 meters and is by far the biggest mirror for our kind of telescope.

The part of the telescope that I helped design and build go in the "receiver cabin" which is the long white part of the telescope that juts out toward you and is below the mirror. The blue building to the right of the telescope is our lab which we share with the BICEP telescope people. Their telescope is on the far right of that building.

In three days I should have finished setting up my part of the telescope and will switch to working with the Berkeley guys again on the camera. The camera is the most technically difficult part of the telescope and I am supposed to be the guy who runs it after the big team leaves in a month.


C. Rager said...

Zak, we watched football for hours at your place on Saturday. I think Todd even stuck around to watch basketball but Amanda and I left before that. It snowed in Clevo today and everyone showed up to work like 40 minutes late. So much for the Northwest rainy winter we were having!

A. said...

Your so fuckin'cool Zak. And I don't mean tempature wise.

Jim said...

Hey Zak,

What's up with the duck tape on the back of the red parkas?

Also, where the heck to people at south pole station take a shower?\

Yea yea dumb questions but humor me please!