What's in a Name?
If you've had a chance to look at your Freezer Challenge score sheet, you might have noticed a unique nomenclature for some of the freezers, namely UULT and ULT for ultra-ultra-low temperature freezers and ultra-low temperature freezers, respectively. Why are we using those terms instead of -150C and -80C?
Calling them 'minus 80s' and 'minus 150s' naturally encourages us to set them to those temperatures. This would be the same as if we called our home refrigerator the 'plus 4' - we'd all likely think our refrigerator needed to be set to exactly +4C. But it doesn't. The same is true for lab freezers. UULTs and ULTs don't necessarily *need* to be set to -150C or -80C, as we'll see later in the Freezer Challenge. So from here on out we'll be using the temperature-neutral terms UULT and ULT.
We haven't come up with a good name for the -20C freezers yet, so if anyone has any suggestions we'd love to hear them!