Saturday, January 8, 2011

"Scrapbooking" late at night

I've been neglecting my "scrapbook" for a while... but I keep a running list of things I need to put in there, gathered from various notebooks and scratch papers I carry around with me. One such topic is long overdue - the basic workings of an ICPMS. Although I have several notebook pages filled with scribbled notes, handouts, etc. on this topic, I still haven't had a chance to distill out the essence from these notes into the Scrapbook. I even set aside 5 blank pages way back last year especially for it... but got sidetracked with other minor little topics (such as, the liquidus phase diagram for Leucite-Quartz-Diopside. Have you ever wondered why it looks so bizarre, with a teeny field of K-spar and an enormous field of Di? It's because Leucite is the "Anti-Quartz"). Resolution for 2011 - draw more, don't just cut and paste (although that's OK for some things, like abstracts, and maps). I find that even copying a technical drawing helps me understand the machine better. Below: how a mass spectrometer works, in one page (or, how I spent my Friday evening - but it was so much more fun than doing other "fun" stuff!).

Other analytical instruments... coming soon.

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