I work for Wetherford International, Ltd., an oil & gas field service company. Our group’s piece of the action is applying the methods of earthquake seismology to mapping the in-ground oil and gas flow paths created by enhanced production methods. This job is the latest in a varying series of jobs in research that have included topics like the threat of debris and micrometeorites to vehicles in low Earth orbit, the characterization of ballistic armor, the characterization of meat toughness using ultrasonics, monitoring and analyzing the micro earthquakes produced by waste water injection in the world’s deepest injection/disposal well, and identification of contaminants in the near-earth surface using signal attenuation from an ultra-high frequency electromagnetic source. I truly believe the only reason that I could secure this diversity of positions was my foundation in physics.
In addition to this technical “stuff,” I was an editor for geosciences journals for nearly two decades. In this capacity, I developed a special course and wrote a column for a geophysics journal on technical writing; its name was The WRITERs BLOCK. This year I turned 60, bought a vintage (1981) motor cycle – no, not a Harley; and, with my oldest daughter, did a week-long trek in the Himalayas. The only way I could make the trek was that for the past 15 years I have been on a master’s swim team. In 2000, I was my age-group Colorado region state champion in the 200 butterfly (no, Michael Phelps is safe; truth be told, I was only person in the race! It would have been hard not to be the champ!).
The picture is of me in Nepal after celebrating a national holiday dedicated to color. The activities of this holiday center on chasing pelting anyone and everyone with colored chalks and with water balloons. If you don’t want to play it’s a day to stay in doors!
“When I got to Miami, I was anything but the high-school-science-guy; much more realistically, I was a high school jock! So, realistically, I was what they call in the National Basketball Association, a project player – with a lot of work and dedication he may blossom into a player. Well, I brought the dedication and the faculty brought the work, I now have a Ph.D. in geophysics from Stanford and a couple of prestigious post docs. The truth is, without Miami’s nurturing, this late-bloomer would never have blossomed.” Kenneth D. Mahrer, AB Physics 1970