Thursday, January 17, 2008

Loading columns and problems with chromatography

As a real life experiment, experiments in SL often run into problems. When loading the column, I am finding that the act of adding resin beads (beach balls) one by one is actually a pain. There should be some sort of script for performing such loading operations. Also, once the column gets loaded with 20 or more beads (first as physical objects then converted as non-physical), I am finding that to get additional beads to accomodate correctly leads to a considerable slow down of the computer. This is because the weight of one resin on another causes very slight shifts and these shifts in positoin are propagated to the entire group of objects. So, I will have to repeat the loading process. Next time, I will load the beads as physical, then convert to nonphysical, then link to the others so that they behave as a unit. At the end, it may even be possible to take away the column, and have the beads (or polymer resin) linked as a gel. This may turn out to make for a nice sculpture --maybe something I can make for the ACS site -- a large polymer gel... As in RL, I am finding that one experiment leads to another.
Next time I work in Second Nature, I also want to see if I can reduce the size of the linked objects I have been making. First, I will try to reduce the size of the Millipore filter. I am not sure if I can stretch the linked objects and all the parts will resize correctly, but I should find out.

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About Me

I am Assistant Professor at the University of Michigan College of Pharmacy, Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences