Memoirs of a Hayseed Physicist by Peter Martel

Screen Shot 2017-07-02 at 12.54.31 PM

Part 149:

At that time I only had a vague idea of how x-rays and neutrons could be diffracted by crystalline matter. One of the first people I had the pleasure of working with was Roger Cowley, a graduate of Cambridge University in the U.K. His teaching methods included asking the student to do relatively simple chores. My first chore included orienting a crystal of cobalt fluoride so that two of its major axes would lie in the scattering plane of a neutron spectrometer located at the NRX reactor in Chalk River. Needless to say, a lot of time flew by before I finally began to get the hang of it. At about 10 o’clock in the evening, just when I thought I had the problem solved, there was a great flash of light outside followed by a loud clap of thunder. Then the lights in the reactor hall went out. That was when I went out as well; in a flash I was out of the reactor building and running at full speed to the parking lot where my trusty old Pontiac was waiting. That was my incident at NRX.

3 thoughts on “Memoirs of a Hayseed Physicist by Peter Martel

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.