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The moment you’ve all been waiting for. . .

We’ve had an exciting week here at the lab. The moment we’ve all been waiting for all year has finally arrived; it’s turret season. From now until the middle of July the turret tank will be drained on a weekly basis. We will be draining it on Monday and refilling it each Friday.

This week after draining the turret tank, we completely removed the old electrolysis system. At the end of the season we will be installing a new system that will provide more coverage of the object and therefore be more efficient. This week we did a condition assessment of the turret and took photos for documentation. We’re planning on doing a lot of cleaning of both the inside and the outside of the turret this season. Cleaning will be done mechanically, using dental tools and air scribes, which are tiny pencil-sized jackhammers that run off compressed air. On the inside, we will focus our efforts around the nutguards in an attempt to remove as many of them as possible. The nutguards are metal shields that prevented the nuts attached to the bolts, holding the turret together, from ricocheting inside the turret in the event of it being struck by cannon fire. Removing them will reveal more of the turret walls and allow more salts to be extracted from the turret in the future.

Refilling the turret tank after a week of work.

We had a few visitors to the lab this week. Reporters from the Daily Press came by and published a great story about the work we’re doing this summer. You can read that here. Our first visitor was also our tiniest visitor ever, a baby turtle found his way into the lab. He seemed very keen to visit the turret. After his visit he went on his way in Lake Maury. We named him Henry.

Our littlest visitor.
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