Week 8: Making a PowerPoint and NASA

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Sunday, July 20, 2014


Benjamin Perez

My research started to wind down even more this week. While Arvind was at a conference in Italy, he gave me the goal to finish the simulations I am running and start preparing a presentation to show him come Monday. Putting together the presentation was fairly easy; I had documented my work clearly so I could follow my time at NIST this summer. I think the hardest part about putting the presentation together was keeping it under ten minutes. I have a lot of results from this summer that I could talk about for 30 minutes, but I have to cut out the filler and leave only the meat of my research. I am eager to receive Arvind’s feedback and his constructive criticism on the power point. He is a stickler for the big picture and why we need this research which is helpful for me, I only hope the presentation is up to his standards. As for the simulations, I am having no problem this week with COMSOL. I have been able to couple the electrostatics with the electric circuit; I am only having a problem massaging the data out to check whether my results are correct. The results will be helpful to my team here at NIST but I don’t know if I will have time to include them in my final presentation next Friday.

In addition to preparing for the final presentation, we had an eventful week of social activities through SPS’ planning. Wednesday, we had an evening dinner with the mentors from everybody’s location at the College Park's Aviation Museum. It was a nice social evening to say thank you to the mentors and sponsors for the time they have put in this summer. We also toured NASA Goddard this week, which has been one of my favorite tours so far. We saw the giant centrifuge they have to test space parts, NASA’s flight control room, the clean room where they are building the James Webb Space telescope, and even had lunch with John Mather, a Nobel prize winner in physics. Next week, we have the tour of the capital building, where Ben and Ashley work, and our final presentations so that week will fly by too. This summer has been a unique experience that I would not have gotten without the SPS internship. I have had a lot of fun and am sad to see that there are only two weeks left in this program.

Benjamin Perez