Wednesday, July 23, 2014

3 Days (Sadly) Before Liftoff

Group Presentations
Today sadly marked another day before I would leave Penn. It started off with group presentations in physics where people presented what roller coasters they did at Hershey Park and where they talked about an experiment they did to see if the behavior of the experiment was exponential. Unfortunately, our group didn't have enough time to go today and so we are going to present our awesome presentation on Friday. As the saying goes, save the best for last! 

Mark Trodden And His Pretty Cool Cosmological Illustrations
Next, we had our 2nd to last speaker (Oh no, already!) Mark Trodden who was a particle cosmologist. His topic about cosmology was pretty cool because he started talking about gravitational lensing which we learned about before from Buvnesh and how it proved the existence of dark matter. Mark's study of dark matter led him to believe that dark matter is composed of particles, specifically a new particle called a WIMP or a weakly interacting massive particle. This could be a new particle that the Large Hadron Collider could find now after discovering the Higgs Boson 2 years ago. 

After lunch, we went back to our interest groups. This time in working with the particle cloud chamber, we used the magnetic coils attached to the chamber to make the muons follow a circular path. It was a success! Look here. You can see the muon traveling a curved path as it's a negatively charged particle being affected by the electromagnetic field passing nearby.

Shake Shack, Heaven of Burgers!
For dinner today, I decided to go to Shake Shack for the first time. It was the best choice that I had made for the day as I inhaled the burger with its special Shake Shack sauce. The Devil's Food custard was also very good and a nice treat as I don't have frozen custard in California. To cap off the night, I went to a college questions and answers forum that was hosted by some of our R.C.s who answered questions concerning college life. I found it pretty insightful as they gave some advice like being flexible with your academic path wherever life takes you and not being afraid of failure, but getting up and learning from your mistakes. They even brought up a good point that people who don't normally face failure in high school start cracking in college and don't know how to handle their lives when failure does come. It's better to learn how to deal with failure now than be sheltered and overwhelmed by it in the future when it does come. Before we went to bed, we presented Tim a book signed by all of us on pickup lines as a present for being a great R.C. Man, I'm going to miss all the people that I've met and become connected with here at Philly!
Tim, the Coolest R.C. Ever. Period.

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