REU Fifth Week

Another big week is done and in the books. Colorado trip is only a week away for us and less than that for Ashraful, the mechanical engineering graduate student involved in designing the housing and such for the sensors. He is leaving this Monday as he is going down to present at the conference that is, as I have understood it, related to this testing. We have been getting ready to go all week, as I have been working with Ashraful on building the arms for the housing, by cleaning off a lot of 3-D prints and painting the materials that he has printed. I also worked with Amy to work towards using a cheaper sensor to replace the XQ or XQ2 sensors since these are very expensive. She took care of all the wiring stuff and figured out some code to read them and I drew up a very simple little piece to hold it on SolidWorks and then printed it, but I think the expensive sensors might be worth the money. This Wednesday was also the 4th of July, so I ran back home to Cozad for the festivities with my family at the lake. I then brought my motorcycle back on the fourth and barely beat the storm on my way. Coming in Thursday we continued to prepare and got ready for the test day on Friday. Ashraful spent a full night putting together all the pieces and we spent all day today, Friday, in the field. We set up as we are going to in Colorado, and went through making checklist and such to make the procedure fool proof and very  organized. We had several challenges and mishaps but we are ironing out the problems and I feel much more prepared to travel out and collect data.

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