The summer plumbing team reports on major works and Station Leader John Leben reflects on his time down south.

Summer plumbing

This week has certainly been a busy time for us at Mawson with the main power house (MPH) shut-down in full swing. The MPH is the lifeline of the station and requires an annual major service to ensure the station continues to operate smoothly. Not only does it supply the station with power but also hot water.

The diesel mechanics and electricians have been working hard on the generators whilst Charlie, Evan and myself have been busy cleaning and servicing the boilers and air handling units amongst other jobs including scrubbing out the kitchen grease trap, one of the more fragrant jobs on station!

With the end of the summer season fast approaching, completing tasks such as the MPH and other major works are of high importance as we begin preparing for the arrival of the incoming winter team and, of course, the Aurora Australis.

The journey

It is almost time for the 68th Mawson ANARE to come home. In seven days the 69th ANARE team will arrive on station and be followed in another two weeks by the Aurora Australis steaming into Horseshoe Harbour.

The highlights of my tour at Mawson research station and with the 68th ANARE team are too many to cover in a small article but I will try to hit the highlights: the first view of the station from the Aurora when all that could be seen was West Arm and the wind turbines, through to travelling up on the plateau and the visits to see the emperor penguins.

What has also made this tour special are the other expeditioners that go on this journey with you. The friendships that you make will last a lifetime, as will the memories. I hope you enjoy the snapshot of my journey south which were selected from over 2000 photos taken while I have been at Mawson.

John Leben, Station Leader