Taking advantage of the mild conditions, Adam and James headed down to Kazak Island to undertake some maintenance on the automated camera and weather station located on the island. The camera and AWS are used to monitor the impact of wind, tidal and wave actions on the formation and breakup of the sea ice in the area. The camera received a replacement solar panel and battery pack, and a bit of a service while the AWS data was being downloaded.
This week at Davis: 31 July 2015
Recently, our two general tradies spent quite some time investigating the serviceability of the green store compactus. Taking the time to thoroughly inspect all components also gave them the opportunity to report on any defects and clear any detritus from underneath the racking. The highlight for the gents was definitely the (canned) leg of ham that had been under the racks for an unknown amount of time. No one offered to try tasting it, so it must have been there a while.
Some defects are being repaired now with more works to occur over the coming summer.
In the wastewater treatment plant, we've seen the continuation of plumbing and electrical works. The chippies have been seconded to the sleeping and medical quarters to assist with the furniture and to give the plumbers and sparky a chance to get some overhead works done.
Robot goes for a swim
As a little side project for the winter, Adam has been building an OpenROV kit (little underwater robot) for exploring under the ice. With the build complete and approvals in place — being a new recreational activity this required an environmental impact assessment to be completed — it has now made its first explorations under the ice.
After its first successful test dive through the sea ice just off from the wharf, some minor tuning of the ballast and sorting out a bug in the video recording, the little ROV went for its second swim on the weekend, this time just off Torckler Rocks with Dennis, Chris and Greg helping out. With everything working well, and having done a little exploration of the area — the low light and snow cover on the ice at this time of year makes it very dark under the ice — the next plan is to check out the DUKW that was lost off station in 1964 as well as an unknown object identified during a hydrographical survey in 2012.
Round two of the inter-station darts tournament
Friday night saw round two of the inter station darts comp. This week our opponents were Macquarie Island. The team from Macca got the upper hand by taking out game one, before the might that is ‘Team Davis’ rallied to take the final two games and the overall victory.
That’s now two wins from two rounds, and the latest mail is that Casey are now cowering in fright with the knowledge that they're next on the hit list.
Friday nibbles at MET
Last Friday, the crew braved blowing snow and strong winds to make their way over to the ‘Temple of Delphi’ (otherwise known as the Bureau of Meteorology’s MET office) situated at the Western end of the station where the MET team of Vicki H and Alex R had prepared drinks and nibbles to while away a few hours post-work with a backdrop of a natural disaster film montage played on a big screen.
An opportunity for the station to regroup after another busy week, share a few laughs and look out through the windows as the landscape of the station changed before our eyes.
With the weather calm once again, Aaron C and James M set off on foot for a leisurely Sunday stroll across to Anchorage Island some 30 minutes walk northwest from station.
With little wind, the pair walked beneath an overcast sky on the sea ice now largely devoid of snow after strong winds. Upon reaching the island, they climbed up to the ridgeline to pay their respects at the three crosses erected in memorial to those expeditioners who have lost their lives at Davis.
Free from snow, the ridgeline upon which the crosses stand has striking views both of the coastline of Broad and Long peninsulas and of station. Facing West, there lay a sliver of blue ocean beyond the expanse of sea ice and bergs. A calm and beautiful setting in which they paused for quiet contemplation.
Accompanied by a slight breeze and the faint glow of a winter’s sun, they returned back across the sea ice to station with a renewed sense of perspective.
Monday night allowed us here at Davis to acknowledge the birthday of a great man: loved by people around the country, a great leader of many teams across the years, respected by many as a hard working type with grit to always perform to the best of his ability, a father figure to the younger members of his team.
He was once described as “a self-effacing man of simple tastes and pleasures”. Happy birthday to Allan Border. Oh, it was also David B’s birthday!
Featuring this week is our glorious winter sunrise.