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How Super Was My Lab: All the Setup

Here we are once more and it’s superlab time.  As suspected, I didn’t in get much writing last night.  In fact, I didn’t get in any.  I suspect tonight’s going to be much the same way, though I can’t guarantee that.  I may get back to the house in time to get in than hour or so.  We’ll see.  It’s not like I’m working under some sort of deadline to get the stuff published.

Speaking of publish, tomorrow I’m actually going to run the interview that I did with an author friend last night.  I spent about seventy-five minutes interviewing her via PM over Facebook and all I need to do now is bookend the interview and set up some links and photos.  Then everybody can have a good time seeing how I do when it comes to interviewing one of our own kind.  And for anybody else would like an interview, just let me know: I’m ready with the gab time.

So now that we’ve got everything laid out to get to the lab, why don’t we actually get to the lab?  Hey, Cassidy, good idea!  Let’s do that:

 

(The following excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Three: C For Continuing, copyright 2016, 2017 by Cassidy Frazee)

 

The lobby of the Tesla Center but like the entryway to a large business: all that was missing was a security guard. The building itself was in the shape of a huge ‘T’, with the bottom of the stem facing northward towards the Instructors Residence. The lobby formed a semi-sphere nearly ten meters across. A single hallway ran down the center of the stem of the building where it met up cross hallway covering the top of the T. The hallway continued onward a few meters more to the back entrance which then led to The Hangar, were students worked on large-scale projects.

Erywin entered the building followed closely by Itsaso Ocampo, a Mórrígan student from Mexico. Seeing her made Annie once more realize that not only were Kerry and she the youngest students in class, but of the five other students three were F Levels ready to graduate at the end of this school year, and the other two were E Levels. By this time next year the class would be down to just four students unless Erywin began bringing in new people.

She looked around the lobby at her students and smiled. “Based on the eagerness I see on everyone’s face, I’m assuming you’re ready to get started.” She started walking or the hallway and motion for everyone to follow. “This way.”

They they stopped in the middle of the four-way intersection at the top of the T. Erywin pointed to two doors set into the west wall of the north-south hallway. “That door—” She indicated the door at the northwest corner of the intersection, one with a Class 10,000/ISO 7 placard set in the middle. “That’s the door for personnel entrances only. These double doors over here—” She indicated a set of doors said midway between the intersection and the south entrance of the building. “Lead to the service lift. Were going to take the lift today, but in the future unless you are taking supplies with you, use the main entrance.” She waved open the doors and stepped into the alcove leading to the service lift. Once everyone was comfortably inside with her she shut the door, raised the safety door and gate, and motion for everyone to join her on the left.

 

Believe it or not, that “Class 10,000/ISO 7” designation took about forty-five minutes of research to make certain I was getting it right.  You can go ahead and look that up on your own by doing a Google search on the information inside quotes on the previous sentence, or you can trust me.  If I were you I’d trust me.

What that designation means is that there are some clean room requirements in place for the Tesla superlab.  And that means there are certain type garments that have to be worn.  Not always, but when the processing begins the kids probably want to make certain that they’re not contaminating their batches. Otherwise, it’s twelve hours of work right down the shitter.  And nobody wants that.

And speaking of clean rooms, why don’t we find out about that?

 

The descent lower level only took about ten seconds and when they finally came to a stop Erywin once more raise the safety gate and door and motion for everyone to follow her. They found themselves in a large windowless gallery with the spiral staircase from the personal entrance set against the far north wall. Along the west wall to the left were several lockers which they knew contained clean suits and respirators. Along the east wall to the right were two sets of windowless doors: one large enough for people in the other a tracked door that raised into the wall above them. To the left of each door were lights, both of which were green.

“All right now, pay attention.” Erywin stepped to the center of the gallery and made certain that everyone paid attention to her. “As we’ve learned in other classes when these lights are green clean room conditions are not currently in effect. That means we can walk into the room now without having to wear safety gear. It also means both these doors can open without issues.

“When that light is red clean room conditions are in effect. It could also mean that there are contaminants present: in either instance, you will be required to put on safety garments before you can proceed into the superlab. On the other side of the personnel entrance is an airlock, and you will have to cycle through that airlock to enter the lab. Only two people can enter the airlock at a time, so keep that in mind. The supply door in front of the lift locks down when clean room conditions are in effect: you cannot enter through that door at all.

“Safety garments are also available inside the lab. That’s because during the time when you are preparing large mixtures it may become necessary for you to protect yourself from fumes and spillage. It’s the same reasoning we have for wearing lab coats, goggles, and gloves working in the normal lab: some of the things we deal with are dangerous enough on their own before you add a magical component. You all know this, so I shouldn’t have to worry about any of you violating protocol when working here.”

She pointed at the track door in a second later they began rising and locked into the open position after about ten seconds. Erwin strode past her students. “This is it, kids. Let’s go inside.”

 

Clean room conditions are important when you’re mixing up stuff, as I pointed out above.  It’s too bad that in the novel it’s the year 2013, because in two more years in real life some idiot over in England will talk about how lady scientist are a pain in the butt because they tend to cry, fall in love with their male colleagues, and are generally just too damn distractingly sexy when they’re in the lab.  This, of course, led to female scientists on Twitter doing an epic burn on this fool posting pictures of themselves working in the field all while being #DistractinglySexy:

I mean, when Annie dresses like this Kerry won't be able to keep his mind on the cook.

I mean, when Annie dresses like this Kerry won’t be able to keep his mind on the cook.

The kids at Salem won’t have to worry about this: they are there to get an education and would not find any of their partners, female or male, all that sexy while wearing clean room safety gear.  And if Annie and Kerry do manage a kiss now and then while waiting for their mixtures to complete, it’s not because they’re turned on by the side of themselves in full-body yellow suits and respirators. It’s because they’ve already found each other distractingly sexy–

Don't worry:  Erywin's already put up warnings at the lab.

Don’t worry: Erywin’s already put up warnings at the lab to cover all possibilities.

Don’t worry: we’re just about the see the inside of the lab and get on with this class.  Tomorrow will be a bit of a detour, what you want for 1 March?  I gotta come in like a lion, you know.

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