Week 7: Running out of Time

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Sunday, July 17, 2022


Divyansh Chamria

This has been a very productive week for me in terms of the internship. As the end of the summer draws closer, I am thinking about everything I need to wrap up in the next three weeks, and I know that there isn’t enough time.

In terms of work, I went back to basics this week. After spending the first day or two at work trying to troubleshoot the LCR Meter, we ultimately thought it would be easier to switch to the makeshift SMU I had worked on a few weeks prior to see if the probe station worked, or if there was too much electrical interference from the optical table the setup was on. After testing some resistors and some MOS capacitors, we had some nice-looking plots and made sure that the instruments were working as expected. Before going back to testing the LCR Meter, I also decided to take the I-V curve of a diode, but this proved very difficult as the drastic change in current in the on vs off state crashed my code. I spent the rest of the day trying to fix this issue but did not make much progress. I have a few ideas on what could fix this, so I look forward to trying them out next week. I also finalized my abstract after going through a few drafts and have started working on the slides for our end-of-the-summer presentation. I also saw the national resistance standards used by companies to calibrate their resistors. It was accurate to 9 decimal places, and used the quantized hall effect in monolayers of Graphene.

I did not do too much apart from work on Monday, but the rest of the week was pretty packed for me. The initially JWST images were released this week, and I am really looking forward to reading about some of the observations that are now possible. Tuesday also concluded with our weekly DnD game. This was the most fun and interesting session yet, and we even had a mat for keeping track of our characters. We killed numerous undead and have made our way to the deepest part of the cave to find treasure.

On Wednesday, a lot of the interns went Kayaking on the Potomac, and this was one of my favourite things I have done in D.C. so far. It has been a while since I last kayaked, but it reminded me how much I miss being in college to a certain extent. On Thursday, we left NIST early to go to the lunch at ACP with the AIP Foundation. The conversation was quite lively, and I think had some helpful takeaways by the end.

Friday was also quite packed as we left work early to go to Jazz in the Garden. It was pretty crowded, and hard to listen to the music at points but it was a nice place to hangout for a while. Right after jazz, some of the interns and I went to an Ethiopian restaurant, which might have been the best food I have had in D.C. so far. On Saturday morning, I biked over to the far side of the National Mall for the Asian Street Fiesta. There were tons of food stalls and lots of different performances. However, the lines for everything were quite long, so I only tried some Japanese-style waffles and mango sago, both of which tasted amazing under the burning sun. It rained soon after, and instead of going back to Amsterdam, I decided to explore the National Gallery of Art, which was right beside us. I spent the next 3 hours there, and I feel like I still missed quite a bit. I would like to go back at some point, but I am not sure if I will have the time since there are quite a few museums I still haven’t had the time to visit.

I spent the rest of the weekend relaxing and preparing for the upcoming week, where we have a beach trip, the NIST tour, and a concert planned. There is a lot left to do in terms of work as well, with the LCR Meter and the PEEM sample holder.

Divyansh Chamria