Here at Nerdette, we've wanted to visit Argonne National Laboratory for MANY YEARS. Why? Because it's a massive research facility, it's just outside of Chicago, and it shares many similarities with Hawkins National Laboratory, the fictional government science complex from the Netflix show Stranger Things.

Greta, Tricia and our trusty guide Justin Breaux take a tour of Argonne, where we talk with a bunch of super-smart scientists about the stuff they're working on and the questions they're trying to answer. Questions like: If you had one of the fastest supercomputers in the world, what problems should you solve? And if you could solve those problems, how would you go about doing it? And what if one problem — a problem you've dedicated your entire career to solving — isn't solvable for centuries?

Also, can we see the Upside Down?


  • Katherine Riley, director of science at Argonne’s Leadership Computing Facility
  • Rajesh Sankaran, computer scientist at Argonne's Mathematics and Computer Science Division
  • Lei Cheng, chemist with Argonne's Joint Center for Energy Storage Research
  • Matt Dietrich, experimental physicist at Argonne's Physics Division