Saturday, May 20, 2006

I Know You're Jealous

You're out there with your Friday night, and your friends and bars and beers and martinis or home with your families snuggling down to watch a movie or something. Where you are not, however, is a physics lab . I know I know everyone wishes they could be as cool as us physicists, but alas it cannot happen. (Did I not mention last time that the shifts are 7 days a week the week you are on the schedule...yes it's REALLY fun).

Yesterday when Jason and I went for our 3 mile run, in an attempt to STFD (Slow The Fuck Down..gotta remember to have recovery runs too) I brought my camera with me to try and get some pictures of the Fermi Lab Campus. For those of you unfamilar with Fermi Lab, it's currently the biggest phyiscs laboratory in the world. In the next couple years, the bigger lab in Europe will open and we still don't know what will happen out here. There is talk of another collider buing built, but a location has not yet been chosen.

We started our run from D-Zero which is across the road from a farm which is home to tons of horses. The strange thing about the Fermi Lab is that it still sits amongst farm land. Like there are fields of corn, and animals and silos and stuff (I am a city kid so when I think of farms these are the things I think of :-) )

We got to the entrance to the ring which has a road which runs all the way around it. If you follow the road all the way around it's just a bit under 4 miles (to try and get a sense of scale). So Me Jason and the Stop sign make three. I had to carefully balance the camera on top of a post which was hollow, so the picture had to be quick as I was convinced that it would fall right down to the bottom. Luckily all was fine.

The water that goes all the way around the ring, although is looks very nice, serves an actual purpose in that it cools down all the electronics that are below ground. We continued around the ring until we got to the other main experiement (although there are tons of them) CDF (which stands for Collider Detector at Fermi Lab...where as D-Zero just stands for the location on the ring at which the protons and anti-protons collide...The CDF location is B-Zero...I know this is all fasinating).

Before we exited the ring to head back to D-Zero I snapped this picture of the Main building, commonly known as the High Rise. I think this is a really amazing buidling and wished my office was here instead (well everyone does). On the inside of this building all the way up 15 floors there are offices that face into the atrium. So actually, if I had an office here I would spend lots of time staring out at other people and their office habits.

After exiting the ring at the CDF location, I grabbed some pictures of the frosty pipes (since we use liquid nitrogen to cool stuff, it leaks and gets things all frosty). We then jogged over to snap some really awesome pictures of one of the sculptures that is onsite. There are a few of them and as we continue to run here this summer I'll try and take some of the other ones as well.

From here we slowly made our way back to DZero. I really liked have the camera with me for this run, but I think if I did it more often I would be very distracted with snapping photos and would be all, no let me take another angle. So, possibly every once in awhile, I have to make sure I get one when we are on the lake front path as that area is truely spectacular.

(That was quite the descriptive post for a little slow 3 mile run!)


Joe said...

You live in downtown Chicago, right? And it looks like the lab is out in the sticks. So how long does it take you to get to work?

LeahC said...

So the lab is about 45 miles from our apartment. I refuse to live in the suburbs though for many reasons, but mainly because I love the the lake front path for our runs. And I have the opportunity to work from home a lot (when we are not shifting). Plus at the end of the day and on the weekend I'm in Chicago which always makes up for the drive.

Bridgette said...

I used to live in Danville, IN (of which I know you all are so jealous!), but I worked downtown Indy and it sucked. I don't think anything could make me do that again.

LeahC said...

yes I will want to work close to where I live when I'm done with this. If it involves walking down my stairs and opening old styles at a local bar...that's fine with me :-)

Full Metal Lunchbox said...

Great pictures!