Our Campus Hosts a Lab Tour for the D.C. Science Writers Association

Press Day

We welcomed the D.C. Science Writers Association (DCSWA) to take an interactive tour of four of our labs and four of the Geophysical Laboratory's labs on campus last Saturday, June 17, 2017.

The day started at our Carnegie Institution for Science headquarters in downtown Washington, D.C., where the 20 D.C. area science writers who signed up met to eat breakfast and get a brief introduction to our campus from our president Matthew Scott and Shaun Hardy, the librarian at our Broad Branch Road (BBR) campus. 

Press DayOn Saturday, June 17, 2017, members of the D.C. Science Writers Association (pictured here with Carnegie Institution for Science employees) toured our campus at Broad Branch Road (BBR). Photo by Robin Dienel, DTM.

After arriving at our campus, attendees met with their tour guides Mike Ackerson, Zack Geballe, My Riebe, and Jonathan Tucker. They then walked through the Abelson Library where Hardy laid out old newspaper cuttings citing various scientific achievements made on our campus, including the top-secret development of the proximity fuze during World War II.

Press DayBefore the tour started, DCSWA attendees walked through the Abelson Library to see old press clippings. Photo courtesy of Carnegie Institution for Science.

During the first half of the tour, DCSWA attendees explored the Geophysical Laboratory's side of campus. Emma Bullock and Suzy Vitale showed off the electron microscopy instruments, Megan Duncan and Michael Guerette explained high-pressure geophysics and materials science, and Dionysis Foustoukos demonstrated how to analyze isotopes in volcanic glass.

Press DayScott Sheppard shows the orbits of Extreme Kuiper Belt objects. Photo courtesy of Carnegie Institution for Science.

Following lunch, the group toured the DTM side of campus. Richard Carlson and Timothy Mock taught a few lucky attendees how to "drive" the mass spectrometer, Scott Sheppard illustrated how the orbits of Extreme Kuiper Belt objects indicate the presence of a "Planet X" on the outer reaches of our solar system, Lara Wagner described how geologists deploy seismometers in the field to detect earthquakes and Conel Alexander passed around pieces of primitive meteorites that are billions of years old.

Press DayTimothy Mock shows to attendees how to "drive" the mass spectrometer. Photo courtesy of Carnegie Institution for Science.

The DCSWA is the largest independent regional science association in the country with 500 members, according to their website. Its members include "writers and editors from nearly all the major news outlets in the Washington, D.C. area, public information officers from agencies and institutions, and freelancers." They hold events that bring science writers and communicators together, like the one hosted at our campus this weekend, to help them socialize, network and gain professional development experience.

Press DayLara Wagner instructs DCSWA attendees to "make their own earthquake" by jumping next to seismometer. Photo courtesy of Carnegie Institution for Science.

To view more pictures from the event, click here.

June 19, 2017

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