Monday!

Meaning another week with my plot... Obsessing about my plot. Trying to make it just perfect. Try different colours. Different styles. Obsess - science style.
On Friday I was actually thinking that this is it, that I was finished with this part of the data analysis; but then, today, I realised that other people have done similar things (analysed other uranium nuclei, for example), and that they have put five of those black pumps in the plot, instead of just four - so now I'm thinking about doing the same thing. 
As you can see I've added more colours to it now; there's another, lighter pink colour, a yellow-orange'ish colour, and the uranium-235 is bright green - since someone suggested that as a colour 🙂 Maybe you have suggestions for the black bumps? They don't have to be black...;)

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Right now I'm having a glass of wine with supervisor Jon - he's here for the week, and in addition to obsessing about this plot, I've shown him where I am in the entire analyse thing. We looked at a couple of other plots too today, and he said that there's definitely a cool paper in there...:D (Of course we don't know for sure yet, but I choose to be optimistic <3 ) If you follow me on Snapchat (I'm sunnivarose, of course), you've seen the plot that Jon was so excited about.

Remember my plot from yesterday? And how happy and proud I was because I managed to make labels for the different data?
Well, today I learned (from Gry - thank you, sweetie <3) how to make it pink - and by my self I found out how to make it the exact right kind of pink. It's called kPink+7 <3<3<3, and it's just perfect, and if you think that I'm not "brave" enough to use this colour for my uranium data in a scientific article, you're wrong 😉
Yeah, and also I did the tweaking of the data points as I also talked about yesterday (I didn't spend all day on making pink data points :P)
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Speaking of pink; tomorrow I'm going to be a guest at God Morgen Norge, together with Kathrine Aspaas, who has just written a book called Rosa er den nye pønken - tune in between nine and ten (I'm guessing something like nine thirty, but I'm not 100% sure).
PS: What other kind of colours should I use in the plot?

Today I've spent time at the EXFOR database - hate it and sort of love it at the same time... 
So far it's the "worst" database I've visited, but so far it has also given me what I've needed *mixedfeelings*.
Then I've worked on my strength function plot, which is starting to look like something now. Tomorrow I hope to tweak it so that it will be ready for my next article 😀  #phdlife

Here are some details of today's plot:

//this may sound silly; but I was so proud of my self when I managed to make these labels (no, I do not love ROOT - yet) 😛

//shapes <3 
//this has to be fixed - the slope of the square points needs to be more in line with the two sets of triangles (task of tomorrow!)

Good morning everyone <3 Day two of this California/Berkeley trip has just started, and so far I'm very happy 🙂
Yesterday I "finished" the first part of the uranium analysis (which is to find the nuclear level density of uranium-234) - that I wrote about in my last blog post - and started the second part of the analysis (which is to find the gamma ray strength function of uranium-234). The picture above show the very first result of my gamma ray strength data (the squares - both black and white) plotted together with different data from the big nuclear data bases. When I wrote "plot" and this appeared I actually screamed with excitement and joy, and hugged Cecilie, who was sitting next to me and helping me, because it looks soooo pretty - even before I've started to "tweak" my data to fit with the ones from the data bases (the ones on the right side of the plot - the little triangles). 
The goal of this trip is btw to put these two properties of the nucleus (the nuclear level denisty and the gamma ray strength function) into simulations of different reactors (that uses thorium based fuel) and see if they affect the results of the simulations - when we compare to standard simulations where we don't do anything about these nuclear properties 🙂 *excited*
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Below are a couple of pictures from yesterday and today. The first one, of Anders, is probably more like what you would imagine when I say "pure joy"...;) He has just rented a nice car and is on his way to Palo Alto as we speak - he is also excited. (Actually kind of wish i could go with him, but I'm on my way to the lab now, with Cecilie - and that will of course also be fun...but in a quite different way 😛 )

beautiful morning at Berkeley campus
cutest squirrel at Berkeley campus

Cecilie and Darren discussion something important (I'm guessing 😉 ) at Jupiter, where we had dinner yesterday - and the day before, when we'd just arrived

Jupiter <3

Jupiter <3

2

It's official: Cecilie (my fantastic and talented colleague) and I are going to Berkeley, one week in August!!!
It is of course for working (but who doesn't want to go to Berekely and work there, huh?!?), so the trip basically takes away (big parts of) my summer vacation, since I have to do a lot of preparations before we go - or else I have really no reason to go, since it wont help to go there unless I have my results that I need to get more results 😛 On the other hand, this trip will (hopefully) enable me to write my third paper, and if so, I'll be a GIANT  LEAP (like, really) closer to my degree, so I think losing a summer vacation will definitely be worth it! 
I have some plans for that third paper (article) that I'm not yet ready to share with you - but I'll do it later, when I know more about how it will go...;)

We're flying with Norwegian, directly from Oslo to Oakland (which is even closer to Berkeley that San Francisco - where we normally fly to), and it will be so nice not to change flights somewhere. Also I'm excited about flying Norwegian on such a long-distance flight - wonder how it will be...:)


I'm dead tired right now... After I held my talk yesterday (outfit above; trying to "be me" but just enough "conservative" at the same time) I felt like I just collapsed (I managed to take part in the conference dinner, luckily 😛 ), and this morning I just slept through my alarm - which never happens, except maybe if my body is trying to tell me a needed a couple of extra hours sleep. I've been really stressed about the talk yesterday, and the (preliminary) results that I showed was finished on Wednesday afternoon. Being so "last minute" didn't exactly feel great, and that was probably one reason why I was so nervous.
It has been a great week though; and even if I really  just want to go home now, and go to sleep, I'm going out with all my great nuclear physicist colleagues from all over the world <3
Wishing everyone a great Friday and a great (long) weekend!
(from my snap chat story - follow me at sunnivarose ;))
- in action -

My talk is tomorrow.
It's not finished yet.
I feel nervous, but also excited...
Nervous, because I wish I had come further than I have, and that I understood "everything". Excited, because I actually do have results, and they are nice, and they make sense. They make me believe that I will actually do this; not just the talk tomorrow, but I will finish my next paper (article/publication) in June (or maybe July - but hoping for June). After that I will start directly to analyse the second part of the uranium experiment, and hopefully it will be much "easier" since I have already done it once 😉 
I'm in my bed right now, working on the presentation for tomorrow, which is around 11. Think I will work for around 30 more minutes, and then go to sleep. I'd rather get up at 5 tomorrow morning, and finish it then.
Wish me luck <3

I'm so relieved right now...! It turns out I've (probably) done a good job when I've calibrated my gamma detectors - and now I'm actually getting real results.
It's preliminary, of course, but it's there - something I can actually show in my talk at the conference here in Oslo next week (that I've been so nervous and stressed about :/ ).
There is still tons of work to do, but I must admit I'm really happy and motivated for everything right now; nothing can stop me, and the rest of 2015 will be about analyzing data and writing papers...<3<3<3
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Here are some happy pictures from yesterday (spending a day off with Alexandra) and todays celebration of 17th of May in kindergarden - just love Biørneblæs, the student marching band!

Happy weekend and 17th of May (for those of my readers that celebrate such things) and everything!
TGIF <3

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...in several ways...

Finished with the calibration of the gamma detectors (happyhappyhappy 🙂 ), but now I'm also "finished" mentally :/
Started this day by oversleeping (not the best start of a looong day), then I gave a talk about nuclear power and radiation at the biology department, and after that I've been working at Gry's office (she helps me A LOT <3) and my own office.
me, ready (sort of) for talking to the biology students - wearing one of my favourite dresses from HM, and of course heels  
After spending a couple of hours fine tuning my gamma detector calibration, I made this plot - showing gamma radiation from oxygen and beryllium. It looks like the peeks are only 20-30 kilo electronvolts "off", and I think that's ok (I'll ask someone with much more experience than me tomorrof, of course!).
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So now I've started to look at time correction stuff - having "fun" with staring at these different graphs. If they look the same, I can tell you they're not, but it's definitely not easy to see which one is "best". At least not for me...
After a good night's sleep it will probably be clearer when I can discuss this with someone (Supervisor Sunniva? 😉 )  tomorrow - meaning; I've been at the University for 12 hours, and now it's time to go home <3

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Good morning!
I forgot it takes forever to get from Charles de Gaulle airport, north of Paris, to the lab in Orsay, south of Paris... Normally I prefer to fly Norwegian to the Orly airport, which is just between the city and the lab, but this time Air France was the only company with reasonable flight times. Anyway, by the time I finally arrived at the lab, I was starving, and had to get something to eat. Then there was catching up to do, and suddenly it was 10:30 PM and I had to go to sleep because I had signed up for the morning/day shift today. I´ve been at the lab since 7 AM, and heavy doses of chocolate and coffee are needed 😉
(Didn´t have time to put on my make up this morning btw., so I look a little...hmmm...don´t really know...:P )

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So I told you yesterday that I was embarrassed, and that I would tell you about it - was planning on doing it last night, but now you know how come that didn´t happen. I will tell you now instead:
Last Friday I was on the radio, and one of the things I was talking about was the amount of radioactivity that was present at earth 3.5 billion years ago (when life started). So I was talking about the half-lives of thorium-232, uranium-238 and uranium-235. 
Thorium-232 has a half-life of 14 billion years, so the amount of thorium here on earth is more or less the same as it was 3.5 billion years ago. The half-life of uranium-238 is 4.5 billion years, so around half of what was here 3.5 years ago is gone.
So far, so good...
But then I talked about uranium-235, which has a half-life of "only" 700 million years. This means that 3.5 billion years is more or less the same as 5 half-lives of uranium-235. Then I did the mistake: I said that since 5 half-lives of this uranium isotope has gone by, there is one fifth of it left - in other words, 3.5 billion years ago there was 5 times as much uranium-235 on earth, as it is today.
WRONG! 5 half-lives doesn´t meen that there was five times more :/ *feeling stupid*
1 half-life of something means that after that time half of it is gone. Two half-lives means that 3 quarters is gone, three half-lives means 7/8 is gone, four half-lives means 15/16 is gone, and five half-lives means 31/32 is gone - 1/32 is left. 1/32 is around the same as 3%, and 3.5 billion years ago there was 32 times more uranium-235 on earth...!
My excuse is that I was really stressed the day before, and something did NOT feel right (e.g. I didn´t get the right percentage of uranium-235 to have fission and a chain reaction going on in nature - and now I know why 😛 ); but this was a "rookie mistake" - and I shouldn´t have done it 🙁

Hope you can forgive me <3 <3 <3

Tomorrow is an important nuclear anniversary - anyone that can guess what it is? I will tell you tomorrow 🙂