Observations about the universe, life, Lausanne and me

Thursday, March 22, 2007

PADEX and pumps

Again two posts in one day! But I couldn't contain myself, because after weeks of reading papers (over 60 so far), I finally get to muck around in the lab.

Voilà, below you can see PADEX (Pedagogical Apparatus to Disillusion Exited eXperimentalists), the plasma chamber I will be working with.

In the second photo are the pumps I will be using. The one below is a roughing pump, and on top sits a Roots pump (another kind of mechanical rotary pump). Together they should be able to get PADEX (Pathological Assembly of Deformed Edged Xylographs) down to about 10-6 bar. But right now poor PADEX (Parent Association for the Debate and Exploitation of X-Rated movies) is stuck at about 0.02 mbar - it seems there is a leak somewhere. This means tomorrow I will have to disassemble PADEX (Party Against Disassembling and Equal eXploits) - change all the fittings and hope for the best.

Or maybe I will get to use the leak-detector! This most exciting machine is more or less a mass spectrometer which searches for helium. You connect it to PADEX (People Against Diabolical Enjoinings of padeX), pump down and then spray a bit of helium near each seal. If there is a leak (at this particular joint, or else you were spraying around too much Helium - hint: It's not advisable to play "Mickey Mouse Voice" while searching for leaks), the mass spectrometer will detect, and hey presto! you have got your leak.

Anyway, that's enough about PADEX (Pathetic Acronyms Do Enhance eXhaustion), but more is sure to follow!

(Pisspoor Authors Do Eventually eXpire )