Davis firsts, penumbral lunar eclipse and a mountain of snow to move this week.

Davis firsts

It’s been a month of breaking records here at Davis station. On Friday 9th of September we reached a minimum temperature of −39.7°C at 0253 Davis Base Time (DBT). This is the coldest September day on record beating the previous record of −38.3°C in 2008. Still a bit far from the lowest ever recorded temperature at Davis station of −41.8°C back in April 1998.

We did go outside to experience the temperature and cold is definitely an understatement to describing the experience. Only 4.9°C between our max and min temperatures for the day.

Then two days later on Sunday 11th of September, we recorded the lowest Station Level Pressure (SLP) ever recorded at Davis during a routine synoptic observation measuring just 919.9hPa (Hectopascal) or a Mean Sea Level Pressure (MSLP) of 925.5hPa. We dropped 54.4hPa in just 30 hours. As seen in our barograph chart which traces a line according to the air pressure. This occurred during our sixth blizzard for the 2016 season. Halley Station (UK) also recorded their lowest air pressure on record just a week earlier. It’s been discussed that this significant low pressure event may be a contributing factor to the retreating fast ice along the east Antarctica coast earlier than normal.

Night is retreating fast

Once again the aurora australis has been putting on some unique light shows. Not long to go now and we will officially have no ‘night', only ‘astronomical twilight'. We are well on our way to 24 hour daylight.

And finally we saw a penumbral lunar eclipse on the 17th September at around 0154 am. This occurs when the moon moves through the faint outer part of the earth’s shadow. As seen on the moon by a slight shading towards the bottom. 

Moving mountains

At times over the 2016 winter, the view from the station leader’s office has been snowy to say the least.

Even during snow clearing I was worried that the mountain of snow was there to stay, but Chris in the groomer has made short work of it and Anchorage can once again be seen!