Dom, our station supplies officer, has the warehouse looking tidy and clean. Nothing is ever out of place.
This week at Davis: 25 July 2014
Nick’s Cartoon of the Week
In the name of science
It’s now been over a week since the sun reappeared above the horizon and to prove she’s back our busy meteorological team (Ali, PJ and Layla) visit the glass sphere (pictured below) daily to take sunlight readings.
As the sun hits the glass sphere, very similar to a magnify glass, the sun burns a mark on a cardboard card. As the sun moves so does the burn mark across the card. The meteorological team can determine how long the sun appears daily based on the length of the burn mark.
On the Job — to Woop Woop
Last week, a team of five departed station early in the morning taking two Hägglunds, their destination: Woop Woop. Situated on the plateau, Woop Woop skiway is where our fixed wing aircraft land and take off from.
This coming summer, a Basler and Twin Otter will undertake numerous return flights from Davis to Mawson, and Davis to Casey, transporting personnel and much needed cargo — all in the name of science.
PJ, Rob, Nick, Val and Josh spent two days at Woop Woop inspecting the vans and identifying what needs to be done in readiness for the summer season. Radios and the automatic weather station will require minor work, fire extinguishers were checked, electrical equipment tagged and tested, the heater repaired and gas supplies checked. Just before leaving, the huts were cleaned thoroughly. A job well done.
On the job — at Brookes hut
No long after the five returned from Woop Woop, another team departed for Brookes hut. Paul, Adam and Val spent less than two days at Brookes to assess the condition of the hut, repair a window, check on gas supplies, test and tag electrical equipment, swap out a heater and give the hut a thorough clean before leaving.
One day’s work in the hut has added thousands of dollars to the value of the little property. Thankfully, it’s not for sale.
Who’s who at Davis
What did you do before this?
You mean before filling in this questionnaire? I was doing a weather observation and before that I had breakfast and a shower.
You mean there was a before? Prior to coming south I worked in an atomic physics lab playing with lasers and vacuum chambers.Why Antarctica?
Fewer questionnaires! Saw a job advert back in the 1980s which rekindled a childhood interest.
Previous Antarctic experience?
Two summer science trips looking at ice thickness using radio frequency techniques. This was at Casey and on the Amery Ice Shelf. More recent work was with the Bureau of Meteorology over four winters at Casey and Mawson.
How do you spend your time down here?Filling in questionnaires!
Apart from work and questionnaires, a lot of time is spent playing with video photography, editing and making equipment to use and control video equipment such as timelapse motion mounts and controllers. And sometimes playing guitar.
What do you miss the most?
My partner Rosie, the bush at home, mangoes and bananas. Not questionnaires.
Best thing about being here?
The scenery, problem solving, the sense of community. Generally can avoid questionnaires.
In the field
We hope you enjoy the stunning photos taken at Lake Druzhby, Trajer Ridge and Watts hut by Stu Shaw last weekend. Although very cold (-32°C) Stu and Craig had a very enjoyable few days visiting some of the most scenic locations in the Vestfold Hills.