Communications Operator and Communications Technical Officer

Mawson expeditioner making an ascent
Mawson expeditioner making an ascent (Photo: Anne Waterhouse)
Digging through two years of snow accumulation to retrieve an automatic weather stationInstalling the new satellite system on the Aurora Australis Looking proud inside the newly installed dome with X-band pedestal at Casey Radio console at Macquarie Island Radio repeater showing mast with antenna, solar array & equipment hut at Mt ElderTesting VHF radio repeater at Tarbuck CragThe SCTO at the radio console at Mawson Downloading tide gauge data is undertaken by the telecomms personnelRegular field radio 'scheds' occur with the station

Telecommunications supports the remote monitoring of scientific experiments, the transfer of data, and enables scientists to consult with colleagues back in Australia and around the world. As part of the Antarctic telecommunications team, you will maintain the network that underpins our Antarctic science programmes.

Regular radio contact provides a safety link for field-based personnel, as well as aircraft and boating operations, and enhances morale by enabling people working at the stations to keep in contact with the outside world.

Telecommunications positions include Supervising Communications Technical Officers (SCTO), Communications Technical Officers (CTO) and Communications Operators (CO).

If you have a background in telecommunications, the ability to work under pressure in isolated environments, and a sense of adventure, you may be just the person we are looking for to join our Antarctic telecommunications team.

As the CO you will operate communications equipment to ensure the safety of personnel travelling in the field, or by aircraft or watercraft. You will assist other expeditioners with minor computer problems and assists technical staff with network administration.

As the CTO you will carry out routine and complex telecommunications installation, maintenance tasks and operate communications equipment. A SCTO is additionally in charge of the communications centre at a station and supervises the telecommunications repair, maintenance, installation and operating work.

What will you actually do on the job?

  • Operate and/or maintain highly complex telecommunications equipment, systems and facilities at a station.
  • Operate radio equipment for communication with field parties, aircraft, ships and small watercraft.
  • Keep a continuous log and full air-ground plot when working aircraft associated with station programs.
  • Maintain appropriate logs and check sheets.
  • Maintain IT infrastructure at a station, including the provision of a helpdesk service to other expeditioners.
  • Maintain radio masts and antennas.
  • Maintain miscellaneous electronic office and amenities facilities, including audio visual equipment.
  • Manage and implement the efficient and effective installation, repair, operation and maintenance of the telecommunications facilities at a station.
  • Provide assistance to science programmes.

As well as these specific job roles you will also be required to perform station duties rostered by the station leader to support community life, such as general kitchen duties, garbage clearance, water duties, and assisting other expedition members with official programs. You may volunteer for other duties such as firefighting, hydroponics and boating. 

Interested in working in Antarctica?

Jobs in Antarctica are advertised during a recruitment period towards the end of each year. Some positions are not available every year. For more information, see Jobs in Antarctica.

This page was last modified on 8 November 2010.