Harold Borders

Harold Borders

Photo credit: Mark Stehle

WHO HE IS:

Instrumentation specialist, Physics and Astronomy

YEARS AT PENN: 29.5. “Not that I’m counting.”

WHAT HE DOES: Borders designs, builds, modifies and repairs instruments for scientific research. “It’s essentially a job shop,” he says. “People come in and say, ‘I need this part or assembly… I need something that does this.’” The machine shop veteran provides the tools necessary for “a lot of cutting edge research with nanotechnology, biomedical research, astrophysical research ...”
Borders designs, builds, modifies and repairs instruments for scientific research. “It’s essentially a job shop,” he says. “People come in and say, ‘I need this part or assembly… I need something that does this.’” The machine shop veteran provides the tools necessary for “a lot of cutting edge research with nanotechnology, biomedical research, astrophysical research ...”

THINGS CHANGE: With computerization, “we’re getting away from pencils and paper” in the design phase. Though he’s using the same cutting tools—lathes and milling machines—computers help him move those machines faster and more accurately.

LOVING IT: “I not only do this for a living, but also for a hobby. It’s like coming in to work and playing.”


Originally published on February 9, 2006