8 December, 2002
Setting Up the Lab
Setting up the lab is a fun activity. When we are ready, the research team is given a lab for the duration of their stay. The lab is empty and has a great view of the Royal Society Mountain Range.
What do you think we need to do to get the lab up and going? Share some ideas with your friends before reading about what we actually did.
The system established here at the Crary lab involved submitting a list of equipment and chemicals that we anticipate needing for our research. The support people make sure all of the items are available. It is our job to go to the equipment and supply room and sign out everything that we need. This takes most of a day by the time we find all of the materials and equipment. For the chemicals, we need to label every item with our event number. We also add the date for when each bottle is opened. We need to decide where to put everything so that it is convenient for use.
One of the first things we do is to wipe down all the surfaces of the lab. There is a lot of dust here and we will be working with growth media for yeast. Bacteria would love to grow in our media, so we want to keep the lab as clean as possible. Next we decide what processes will be done where in the lab. We need to filter samples, bake samples, incubate, extract DNA, make growth media, check pH of various solutions we will be making, autoclave glassware and growth media for the yeast, and keep track of everything. We also need to make sure all of the instruments work. We will need a pH meter, an incubator, an oven, and other items that we need to calibrate and make sure the dials accurately measure temperature.
Dr. Redman sets up some work spaces that will be as clean as she can make them. She knows from experience that taking time now will same time later on.
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