Graham Robertson was the biologist at Mawson in 1988 and was responsible for a pioneering research program on the breeding and feeding of Emperor penguins. As breeding of these birds occurs in the middle of the Antarctic winter, he was required to live and work almost continuously in the field from July until November.

Graham’s field research work was pioneering in many respects, particularly the deployment and recovery of electronic data logging devices which were attached to the backs of study penguins during this period. His work was often conducted in temperatures down to −30 °C with the strong winds and the short periods of daylight that are features of the weather during an Antarctic winter. He remained undaunted by the difficulties presented by the weather, logistics, equipment and techniques.