This week we feature photography that will amaze; and learn more about when to put the bins out at Mawson.

Trick photography at Mawson

With the short daylight hours during the winter months here at Mawson and many of us having brought with us a myriad of camera equipment some of us experimented with light painting.

Light painting is done by leaving the camera’s shutter open for extended periods of time to allow light to move around the frame of a stationary camera. This burns the image into the camera’s sensor or film leaving streaks of light. With a torch or battery operated light on a short rope, spirals and orbs can be photographed.

Photography in general is a very popular pastime down south however light painting is a hobby for me at home in Melbourne so I really wanted to have a play with what could be done here in Antarctica.

On an a few overnight stays on Béchervaise Island I managed to wrangle some of the other expeditioners into standing in the cold and spinning some lights with me. Thank you Leon, Mark and Alex, I think our photos turned out great.


Thursday night is not bin night

When you live in a small community like us down here at Mawson you become conscious of the amount of waste you create.

We don’t wait for Thursday night to put the bins out on the curb and check the neighbours to see if it is recycle week. Basically everything we have down here is brought in by ship and when we are finished with it then it has to be put through the waste treatment plant, the incinerator or sent back to Australia by ship. Australia has strict laws about what we bring back in and how it arrives there, so a lot of effort is put in to getting that right from our end.

Our toilet, bathroom and kitchen waste is sent to our waste treatment plant for processing by us. Kitchen scraps and some other non-recyclables that can’t be returned, end up down at the incinerator building where we burn them at high temperatures a couple of times a week. Waste oil products are recycled to heat the workshop. Everything else goes back on the ship when it makes its yearly visit. There is a large range of options from drums to bins to pallets to big shipping containers to safely store and transport the waste.

Around the station we have collection points for normal recycle items like glass, paper  and cardboard  but we also have areas for other items like cooking oil, medical waste, batteries, aerosols, tyres and styrene foam to name a few.

At the end of the year all these things have to be labelled, packed securely and logged on the computer before the ship will take them.

It can be a lot of work but we all love being down here in this beautiful clean environment and so we don’t mind doing our bit to keep it that way.

Shane, Waste Management Officer


Auroras of the week

With increasing hours of daylight down south our opportunities to witness and capture aurora action will soon pass us by, but in the meantime, here are some spectacular auroras of the week.