It’s been approximately nine months since the selection workshop, and everything is moving on at a brisk pace. The design has been long set and agreed upon, and now we have just finished our initial manufacturing run. Between collaborating with the Physics Workshop and Mechanical Engineering laboratories, and also doing some of the work ourselves, our experiment is finally starting to take shape! From aluminium blocks and sheets, to nylon rolls; and from the traditional lathes and milling machines to some really fancy water-jet cutting machines and 3D-printers; Matthew has been working tirelessly for a few weeks already, with the help of Edward and James… you can see our initial results for yourselves!
Having most of the parts already ready in front of you and not being able to assemble the machine is just plain cruelty for any engineer. I couldn’t resist putting the parts on top of each other to see how they will look like, but as I was distracted, Matt quickly disappeared, only to come back in five minutes with some bolts to start assembling it. Throughout all of this James and Ed have been also been working on some 3D-printed prototypes, and doing better thermal and finite element analyses, respectively.
In the meantime, Enda and I had been working on other bits in the SERENE electronics lab. We need a very particular type of cable to go up all the way from the BUZZ experiment control system to ImP at the end of the boom, and no matter how hard we looked all over the internet, we couldn’t find anything to suit our needs. And so, we decided to make our own cable, how hard could it be? Three PTFE covered twisted pairs, and a further seventh wire later, we made ourselves a good, flexible and well shielded cable.
We have got loads more to do! By the time the IPR comes by, which is soon enough 😇, we ought to have another manufacturing run finished. That would provide us with all the major components to start testing on our critical sub-systems. Keep following us on our social media for more updates as we progress along with manufacture, testing and integration!