Wow, sorry, just realized none of that post saved for some reason...let's try this again. I guess now this is my fourth attempt, using the 30 minutes of free wifi in the Johannesburg airport while I can. Here's what I meant to post yesterday:
I wrote this awesome, last post yesterday afternoon, then as soon as I hit submit, the webpage locked up and I lost the entire post. So I re-wrote the whole thing super quick before heading off to a Fourth of July barbeque, but, as I hit submit, I lost internet connection and lost the entire post. Here's my third attempt at telling you guys how this past week went:
Right now it's 4:45 am and I'm sitting in the Raleigh airport (for the 6th time this summer) on my way to New York to make my flight later this morning to Johannesburg, South Africa. I'm running on 90 minutes of sleep and so excited and nervous and in disbelief that I'm leaving for an entire month. This last week was crunch time for me, because I needed to get as much done as possible before taking off and totally forgetting where I'm at with my project. It was a long week, but I broke some serious ground, so I feel like I'm leaving at a good spot. One of my biggest goals for this summer was to have a preliminary abstract for AGU before leaving, and that got accomplished this week! I finally got my codes de-bugged so they produce some data that makes sense! Now I have quantitative details about infrasound in the area that I can actually use to start drawing conclusions, which is awesome.
I feel like I've finally gotten through the hardest part of my project, but Danny and Jonathan have been giving me some good advice on moving forward from here, which they both say is actually the most difficult part. Now, like a real scientist, I have to figure out what my data signify in order to draw an important conclusion. I have to investigate the interesting or questionable signals and try to come up with the story of where they came from and why they arrived at the array at the time they did. I've been doing a lot of reading about infrasound propagation in the atmosphere, which is really complicated, but very interesting. Just before I left I started grouping events in clusters to start thinking about possible sources in the area and calculate azimuth ranges to put in my AGU abstract. When I get back, I hope to look into this more to see if I can credit some of the high inclination angles to refractions/reflections in the stratosphere (or higher).
Outside of lab, this week was...humid. It has been so hot and the humidity is just stifling. I find myself looking forward to going to the desert, which is sad. But I'm still managing to enjoy my summer while I can. On Thursday, Jonathan, Rebecca, and I went to Occaneechee Park, which Jonathan calls "The Yellowstone of North Carolina." It was really gorgeous, and great to get out in the morning and hike before work. We were so ridiculously afterward, though. Then yesterday I went over to Jonathan's for a pre-fireworks barbeque. Classic Lees lab: why waste a good explosion? After work on Thursday we set out a seismometer, a geophone station, and three infrasound sensors to see what kind of signals we pick up. The fireworks were awesome--not quite the same as detonating a shockwave-producing TNT explosion, but still cool. smiley
So, this is it, I don't know when/where/if I'll have internet in the coming month, but I will try to sneak in an update if I can. I tried to add pictures to this post the previous three times I submitted it, but I think that's why I was having problems, so I had to cut them out. Other than that, see you in August!
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