Catherine, Katherine, Catherine Mallet discussed on Rework
Me L. Hello, catherine. Hi. Hi. Oh my gosh. I can hear you loud and clear. I'm so happy. That's perfect bit very it's been very slurred tonight. I was worried too because I just thought there's a million things that could go wrong. But this is great. Thank you so much for making the time I'm talking to Catherine mallet, and you can tell the phone call is a little choppy, this is because she's calling from Antarctica. Welcome to rework a podcast by base camp about the better way to work and run your business. I'm Sean Hilton. I'm Waylon Wong. And I will let our guest today introduce herself. My name is Kathryn Millard astrophysicist actually work for the ice cube collaboration which is a nineteen detector those poll Waylon the story hits on a couple of my most nerdy interests, mainly polar exploration, and Astro physics actually do mind if we do a little physics lesson. I to help explain what Catherine's doing in the south pole. I'm all yours. Professor hilter. Okay. The ice cube neutrino observatory is this big scientific experiment where Katherine and our colleagues studied these tiny subatomic particles called neutrinos and by tiny. I mean, really really tiny which makes them extremely hard to detect the ice cube was basically about five thousand light sensors arrayed over cubic kilometers sunk deep in the Arctic ice Tommy more about these neutrinos. So violent cosmic events like exploding stars send neutrinos hurtling through space at essentially the speed of light some of those neutrinos are going to pass through the earth where scientists like Katherine can study them. And how come this has to be done in an article? So I think this is the coolest part coolest anyway to avoid interference from background radiation. Neutrino detectors need to be buried deep underground. They also need some sort of transparent medium, some detectors consist of enormous tanks of water that have been built in abandoned mines ice cube. However uses the thick pure and ultra transparent ice that's found at the south pole. That's clever when comes through the it starts into acting, and we'll lose energy by emitting light, blue light. And they relate is what we detect are in ice cube. So to say those little flashes of blue light get picked up is cubes optical sensors by tracking which sensors trigger in which order, Catherine or colleagues can figure out the direction the neutrino was traveling and how much energy at head. And that's the end of Shawn's physical. Listen, but Wayland you didn't lead on the story because you you're looking to unlock the secrets of the cosmos, worry that was just a bonus. But I was introduced to Catherine actually in a more roundabout way. I got an Email from someone doing PR floor an anti malware software company called MC soft. They're headquartered in New Zealand, but have people working remotely all over the world. Just like base camp. And the peer person mentioned they had an employee in Arctic I seize on that right away. Because I thought it'd be neat to do a story about what it's like to work not just remotely, but extremely remotely from an article. And I started working part time for them because they needed someone that speaks for languages, and I want to know the ones that they were looking for. So there was nice on the when I applied here. Actually, people told me that the internet here so bad that I there's no way I could continue with my job at the moment this necessarily true. However, we are not sure how much of the satellites that we currently are going to be open throat the entire winter. Which is why we took the pickup in basically freezing my employment for the time that I'm working Feis Cuban the in providence. Oh back to them. Once I finish up here. Hey, so what's the risk with the satellite in the winter? And that starts fairly soon. Right. You're coming up on that season. Now. It doesn't have duct tape to do with the window. What's happening is that older science stare that is currently being produced. Here's transmitted throughout the hated. Set the light. That's the light is only useful the science data that we don't necessarily have access to any of its internet so design, but that science data satellite is reaching the end of its life on they've been expecting it to crash into the full awhile now on current full stay, this might happen. In a pro if that happens, this nice feather bed with call on at the moment will become a dedicated satellite for science state that only on we'll have to go back gyna-, which is a great name for Smith light. That's that's gonna be the kind of internet, but you have to wait a Mets opened up a page an-and actually working remotely as Mona's on. Title. It's many because when I was going back and forth with the PR person about interviewing Katherine he told me that she had to start working for MC soft because of bandwidth limitations. I'm using air quotes around bandwidth, limitations. And at first I thought that was an annoying corporate euphemism for getting laid off. But as you her Catherine explain its littoral bandwidth, Catherine I were able to do an audio call because right now, we're too is in the south pole. They get four hours of good internet day for personal stuff while the satellite passes overhead and that four hour window shifts by a few minutes each day when Catherine I talked it was seven PM her time and midnight might time. It took a non zero amount of effort to coordinate this call and that gave me a very small taste of how Catherine's work life in. An Arctic is unique this episode ended up being about what it's like to live and work with a small group of people in very close proximity. Isolated from the rest of the world. It's about self care and working calmly in extreme conditions, which is very rework after all. So let's get back to Catherine story when she first heard about the opportunity to work at ice cube. She was early in her studies to get a PHD huge. These take Lynn. So when I heard about this opportunity, it was more of a dream didn't expect it to come true. On things progressed more and more of my friends from the investing spending here, and they all came back, and they were thrilled. They will said this has been the best time of their life. If I have the opportunity after different Cliquot. So once I finished my PHD invited plight directly. They interviewed me. But they didn't pick me. Then every applied this young. Actually this year. They picked me some. Can you talk about the kind of preparation you had to do how much time did you have? And you know, were you given materials and resources about everything you needed to do before departing. So the preparations are in this case the initial job interview was back in March. And at that time, they lot of medical checks because the medical coverage shoes bedding admitted so they only one they wanna make sure the don't type any pre existing conditions. We were into medicine discontinuity in August, nineteen anatomy, spend, two months medicine, preparing for jobs. They told us kind of equipment we have here. Whether the typical failures what kind of fixes we can implement after the trading, Wisconsin. The team was sent to Denver Colorado for the next day JR. What happens is that? We have a team building events that we get to know all the people that we will be spending a years on the thing is fairly small station winter. So a lot of the jobs that are usually done by they'll have to be all by us. What happened in Denver's that we got a crash to be firefighter on. I will be part of the official fire brigade for the winter. Oh my goodness. Oh, what kind of training? Did you get to become a firefighter? We we did get to climbed through burning houses. It was actually pretty cool. The first thing you need to decide to put on that gear. Correct. Dry because if you put it on Longley into go into a fire, it's gonna be pretty pretty bad. Firefighting is even trickier at the poll because it's too cold for water based fire retardants train this week here in at SaaS both. So that we can be prepared in once a month. We have drove where we simulated fire. We have to go into fight down. What kind of mental health assessment? Do they have to do because I imagine that's just as important as the physical aspect. What is is that actually during the team bowling spend a week together? A team building there's a psychologist present during the week that Monus serves us also teach us how to cope with anger or disagreement within the group, for example of very extrovert twists. No, very introverted person could have issues coping him because I he doesn't find enough contact on your friends cannot retrieve himself from the people get enough time. So that looking for a very specific type of person shy. Do you consider yourself more introverted or extroverted? That's a really good question.