Thursday, July 9, 2015

This blog entry features: family, the Fourth of July, Pride, and a method that I re-designed for the tungsten disulfide flake transfer.

On July 2nd, I celebrated the day the Continental Congress approved the Declaration of Independence  with my mom, dad, and Uncle Paul. We attended  the International House's  BBQ party which had the type of food typically expected at BBQs. Following the party, I gave them a tour of the nanofabrication center and of my physics lab. My mom brought decorative red-white-blue sprinkled brownies for my lab group to enjoy and we went to drop them by the lab. It was around 9pm and David - a post-doc - and Will - a PhD student - were in the lab still diligently at work. Lesson: I guess it is okay to interrupt someone if it is to give them food (especially brownies). 
On Friday the 3rd, I attended the Philadelphia Fourth of July block party between 5th and 6th streets with some of my REU friends. I did not end up attending the celebrations downtom on the 4th; instead, I choose to spend time enjoying University City. From my apartment window, I saw a fireworks display. 

I volunteered at the Philadelphia Pride Block-party on Sunday. It was fun to assist and I was proud to support the movement and watch as the new pride sidewalks were opened to mark the Supreme Court ruling of nationally legalized same-sex marriage. 

In the lab this week, my research has focused on designing a stamp transfer method to achieve optimal alignment of one flake of tungsten disulfide (WS2) to a membrane on the silicon wafer. Previously, I had designed the set-up of a micro-manipulator that will assist in this transfer. In the chemical part of our lab, I make a gel that will be used to hold the flakes. I then secure the gel to the micro-manipulator using a polyurethane coating. To test the stamp transfer, I visually observe alignment under the optical microscope and then lower the gel to contact with the membrane. Using minute motion, the apparatus is lowered to the microscope stage. Hopefully the contact works as well when the fresh WS2 arrive.
I look forward to enjoying dinner tonight with my grandma and mom. Mom is stopping in Philly on her way to taking grandma to the shore for the weekend.

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