This summer I’m doing research at the College. We just got a new building, it isn’t completely finished and the chemistry department was the first to move in. They keep turning off our utilities and ruining our reactions, ha. Also, there are so many saftey features; our hoods beep at us if we open them too far (like enough to reach to the back or to see what we are doing), also last night a vacuum pump overheated in the basement and the smoke set off alarms which resulted in fire trucks from 3 jurisdictions and a haz-mat crew, as well as several professors (including my own) spending the evening at the ISC. Well Prof. Harbron left around midnight, after they guarenteed that they would not turn off our water, lol. Oh what excitement.
But what do I do? I sent Jacob a picture of my work today and thought I could share it here too. So everyone in my lab makes polymers (long chains of repeated sets of atoms (monomers)) and ours are special because they fluoresce, which means they glow! especially when you excite them with certain lightwaves. So I am studying what my labmates are making. Its my job to figure out what the best way is to put them on cover slips and then to use a fancy microscope connected to a computer to look at them, and create experiments to test them. BTW my work is officially called single molecule fluorescence microscopy. One of my labmates is making nanoparticles (tiny clumps of material) out of her polymer (which are normally quite fibrous, or stringy), and that is what I am looking at/studying for the moment, and what you can see below.