I was driving into Argonne with a colleague yesterday morning and he was telling me about the experiment (E687) that he worked on when he was a graduate student. It caught fire and burnt down. The reason for the fire was found to originate from a very high voltage power supply with no fuse. This alone would not have caused the fire. The wires in those days were flammable, and they were hanging down a bit where they were fed into the detector so they were separated with (highly flammable) polystyrene wedges.
Continue at The Guardian.
Thank you, that was most risible. I studied physics for five years at school, and don’t remember laughing once; I may have occasionally smirked, in a pubescent lascivious manner, at times when my concentration was distracted by the female class members.
Not that my concentration was much to begin with; concentration could not accurately be described as being one of my behaviours.
And, in deference to my new found fondness for scientific accuracy, I need to say that I did not “study” physics, I merely attended physics lessons. I learned nothing, but it was marginally preferable to sitting outside in the snow.
Do you know Ian Smith? He was my physics teacher in the second year. He was totally devoid of humour. He probably won’t (and I now understand from your article that even if he has passed on to the great LHC in the sky it will not preclude the possibility of his so doing) even laugh when Thatcher dies. If only he had included some clerihews, I might have learnt summat.