Aleksandra completed her PhD at the Institute of Nuclear Physics Polish Academy of Sciences in 2008 before taking a post-doc position at the University of Alberta. Much of her work in this position involved testing how much stress could be caused by the novel hold-down system on the existing acrylic vessel of the SNO+ detector. She designed the testing process, prepared the setup for it, and after running the tests was responsible for extracting the data and summarizing her findings for.
Following her post-doc, Aleksandra was hired by the University of Alberta as a research associate, although she was based at SNOLAB. Again supporting SNO+, she was leading several projects. The project that took the most effort was the vacuum leak-checking the scintillator plant, which involved developing all of the procedures and training personnel (students, post-docs) so that every single connection in the plant could be tested for leaks. The task took almost two years and involved 40 people.
As a research scientist, Aleksandra is continuing to work on SNO+ projects (commissioning the scintillator plant, maintaining the cover gas, and overseeing the tellurium plant construction) in addition to taking on new responsibilities.
“Being involved in the commissioning of a few projects, I expect that each day will be different, each day will bring new challenges and problems to solve. But that is exactly why I love my job! One thing that always stays the same: taking the 6:00 am cage underground and 3:45 pm cage to surface, so I have to plan your work in advance and be efficient.”
“I love seeing the detector getting closer and closer to its main phase. I am contributing to it by building, testing, and commissioning the new additions to the experiment.”
“I had a wonderful physics teacher who was very passionate and I think that triggered my interest in asking difficult questions and trying to find answers. I also love crafting and in some sense experimental physics is not much different: designing, building, using tools, testing, improving or finding new solutions it is all about the knowledge, imagination and manual work.”
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