PhD Diary.

This is a daily diary of Anna Parsec-Wallis who started her PhD journey in Planetary Physics on 1st February 2024 at the Mullard Space Science Laboratory in Surrey Hills, UK. This doctorate degree lasts 3.5 years – hence, there are 891 working days when some form of research should happen. This diary is a way to make Anna accountable for every day of her doctorate years and make sure she stays on track. It is an ambitious activity it feels but not as ambitious as the actual goals of this PhD. Let’s have fun!

PhD days completed so far
0 /891
Just few days left
PhD Day 85
3 June 2024
First working day of June which makes me realise how very few days I have left before I present my...
Astrogazers - working session
PhD Day 84
1 June 2024
It was Saturday but I did spend it attending the working session of Astrogazers who prepare for their cubesat mission...
Mum is around
PhD Day 83
31 May 2024
My mum has arrived at midnight and we got home after picking her up all the way in Stansted by...
Grand piano is in
PhD Day 82
30 May 2024
I didn't go to MSSL because I needed to overlook the move of my grand piano. Funny enough, the piano...
Sensitivity level is high
PhD Day 81
29 May 2024
Not sure what was wrong with me today - maybe that's a bit of sleep deprivation - but I was...
Nailing down the equation
PhD Day 80
28 May 2024
The title is close but not to close to what I was doing today. Yes, I was trying to nail...
Catherine's Viva
PhD Day 79
24 May 2024
It was my first time experiencing someone's viva. This time it was Catherine who studied dust storms on Mars. Becky...
Finished coding (almost!)
PhD Day 78
23 May 2024
I was working on my code closer by the end of the day and then at home to check whether...
Still a much needed rest
PhD Day 74
17 May 2024
Just trying to rest with an occasional emails check
Still resting
PhD Day 73
16 May 2024
Just trying to rest with an occasional emails check. And fixing things around the house like this chest of drawers.
Another Rest Day
PhD Day 72
15 May 2024
Just trying to rest with an occasional emails check
Rest Day
PhD Day 71
14 May 2024
Just trying to rest with an occasional emails check
Sudden decision not to fly to the conference
PhD Day 70
13 May 2024
It was the day when I was meant to fly to DIAS 3rd outer planet moon - magnetosphere interaction workshop...
PhD Day 64
2 May 2024
I was meant to be celebrating my birthday. I did celebrate a bit but mostly I was upset and crying...
Research-Admin Balance
PhD Day 62
30 April 2024
Apart from going through million of my admin tasks and attending talks at MSSL, I was tortured people of different...
Planting Therapy
PhD Day 61
29 April 2024
As much I'd like this day to be all about research that I keep putting off, I actually spent it...
Becoming Anna Parsec-Wallis
PhD Day 60
26 April 2024
Travelled to London to collect my name change certificate. Starting that day I have every right to be called properly...
Occupied with the business event instead
PhD Day 59
25 April 2024
I had to take a day off because there was an event James and I were organising for one of...
Busy with anythng but research
PhD Day 52
16 April 2024
If I find all sorts to do instead of research when I am in the lab, imagine trying to do...
How people focus at home?
PhD Day 51
15 April 2024
I ahve no idea how I would have found any time to read papers when there was so much to...
Not fit for a Technical Showcase
PhD Day 50
12 April 2024
I was meant to go to the technical showcase were MSSL was presenting lots of space stuff. However, my morning...
MSSL still on Easter Closure
PhD Day 43
3 April 2024
Easter Break
PhD Day 42
2 April 2024
Start of Easter Break
PhD Day 41
28 March 2024
Day 40
PhD Day 40
27 March 2024
Day 39
PhD Day 39
26 March 2024
Day 38
PhD Day 38
25 March 2024
Day 37
PhD Day 37
22 March 2024
Day 36
PhD Day 36
21 March 2024
Day 35
PhD Day 35
20 March 2024
Day 34
PhD Day 34
19 March 2024
Day 33
PhD Day 33
18 March 2024
Day 32
PhD Day 32
15 March 2024
Day 31
PhD Day 31
14 March 2024
Day 30
PhD Day 30
13 March 2024
Day 29
PhD Day 29
12 March 2024
Day 28
PhD Day 28
11 March 2024
A Day of Thinking
PhD Day 27
8 March 2024
I noticed that one day a week I tend to think rather than do anything. I hope that's okay! I...
Achievement of the year
PhD Day 26
7 March 2024
Can you imagine cycling for 1.5 hours to your place of research and realising that you have forgotten your laptop...
Wednesday - day of talks
PhD Day 25
6 March 2024
In the morning I had a call with the Physics teacher at Croydon High School for Girls to discus their...
Literature Review
PhD Day 24
5 March 2024
My morning was devoted to online training on Literature Reviews. It confirmed my idea that the more you do, the...
Absent (but still reading papers)
PhD Day 23
4 March 2024
Due to the fact that I had an appointment in the Russian Embassy on that day, I had to take...
No time for reflection
PhD Day 22
1 March 2024
I thought I would have a day for reflection and data analysis but at 09:45 I realised that I am...
Data Focused
PhD Day 21
29 February 2024
My day started with a very little time spent on emails but otherwise I was focusing on my data analysis....
The simple way to have a good day
PhD Day 20
28 February 2024
Somehow I ended up triple booked: 5 hour training on research pipeline, 2 hours trainings on statistical research and a...
Eager Students
PhD Day 19
27 February 2024
It was a similar day of not getting anywhere and yet constantly working on something. Last minute I was due...
Where did the time go?
PhD Day 18
26 February 2024
Where did the time go? What I was meant to do is to read for 4 hours and write for...
PhD Day 17
23 February 2024
Several emails from the night before (23:45 etc) were sent out at 8am. Felt good about the progress. Did Python...
Structuring Success
PhD Day 16
22 February 2024
Meeting with my supervisors  went well. I started by sending the agenda, then I presented my thesis structure, main PhD...
PhD Day 15
21 February 2024
On the way to MSSL took a Surrey Connect bus and there were many other people wanted to get to...
PhD Day 14
20 February 2024
On this day, I stayed at home, responding to emails and gaining insights from Catherine's talk on Outreach at Royal...
List To Do
PhD Day 13
19 February 2024
Is having 50 tasks on the list to do too much? Well, that's how I spent the first 2 hours...
Processing all the activities a PhD entails
PhD Day 12
16 February 2024
Another day of a reflection necessary for my PhD path. It was not intentional but definitely so needed for me...
Identified my long-term attachment
PhD Day 11
15 February 2024
I was in the Lab only for 2 hours because at midday I was cycling on the way to our...
Talk after talk
PhD Day 10
14 February 2024
Wednesdays are days when it’s hard to plan anything and you just go with the flow. That’s what I was...
Emails, Terminals & Choir
PhD Day 9
13 February 2024
It is unbelievable how long some simple things can take. For example, the email signature. Considering that I do some...
An unproductive day
PhD Day 8
12 February 2024
I don’t think I was productive enough that day and I am puzzled about what exactly I was doing. However,...
A day of reflection
PhD Day 7
9 February 2024
I stayed at home and used this day for reflection on everything. It allowed me to make research log notes...
First official meeting with my supervisors
PhD Day 6
8 February 2024
It was my first time meeting both of my supervisors at the same time: Prof Andrew Coates, my primary supervisor,...
Attending a doctoral tips and networking event
PhD Day 5
7 February 2024
Talking of longer hours, that day I got to the Lab at 8am because that’s a day with many meetings...
Creating a plan for my PhD
PhD Day 4
6 February 2024
My PhD working hours are 10-16 including brief lunch. It’s not much and I know that other people prefer to...
Becoming Anna Wallis
PhD Day 3
5 February 2024
Over the weekend I was reading the paper that I plan to follow to replicate the results and then do...
IT & Technical Setup
PhD Day 2
2 February 2024
I was alone in the Planetary Group office but there were many people who I knew in the building and...
First Day of PhD
PhD Day 1
1 February 2024
What an exciting day! My first day doing PhD. So many new things when I felt so happy and challenged...