The rock and ice mechanics lab at Lamont-Doherty is led by PIs Heather Savage, Christine McCarthy and Ben Holtzman. We are in the process of growing our lab and building our experimental program. Along with a team of postdocs, undergrads, grads, and longtime staff engineer Ted, we are rehabilitating and revamping some of the old equipment and building new rigs for exciting new experiments on both rock and ice. You can follow along with our progress here.

Monday, 5 September 2011

An Introduction to the lab

So here is our rock mechanics lab. The thing is, the old lab used to be really big and full of lots of stuff. Lots and lots of stuff. They even had some stuff stored over in another building. Before they hired my boss, the University split this old lab into two smaller labs. With her "start up" fund, my boss had the floors and walls redone and new shelves and counter space installed.

When it was time to move back all the old equipment--including the stuff from that other building--there just wasn't enough room. So it was all piled up everywhere. I wish I took a picture of the way it looked a month ago when I first arrived. We have already done a lot of work finding new homes for things. But these pictures will give you the general idea.
 Above is the view from the front. This doesn't even look that bad. The blue and green metal cabinets behind the tool box and the mini drawers above the yellow box on the left are recent installations.
 Here is a view from the back of the lab. That lathe in the foreground is actually up on rollers and may or may not be fully operational. 
 Along the desktop. That section down at the end will eventually be a soldering station. Currently it is just known as the area where I throw the soldering irons (5 so far) when I find them in various parts of the lab.
 This is one of the back rooms, where the high pressure rig is kept. This is what the whole lab looked like one month ago.
And here is the other small back room. That big gray block in the middle is concrete that is connected to the building and the underlying foundation. It will be a great place to do creep experiments or other tests in which you want to reduce any outside vibrations. Right now we just use this as the room where we put the junkiest of the junk that we don't want to deal with any time soon.

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