Dave, Elin, and I have now been in Antarctica for a week! Unfortunately we haven’t been able to take any flights out to our sites in the past week due to cloudy skies and crowded scheduling for the helo flights.. We have been trying to fly to Ferrell or Laurie II since Monday, but it hasn’t worked out. In the mean time, we have been able to get a lot of stuff ready for our teams trips to WAIS (West Antarctic Ice Sheet) and South Pole. The main things we have been able to do is build power boxes and haul all of the parts of the AWS to the science cargo center.
First, we decided to build the power boxes. We got a truck and drove up to our orange shed to fill the truck with about 20 batteries that each weigh about 65 pounds. Then we brought them back to Crary lab to charge them up overnight.
Once all of the batteries were charged we put them into power boxes which are large black pelican cases that are stuffed with foam. Then we cut out the foam and insert 2 batteries per box. Then we cover the batteries with another layer of foam, and then the solar panel goes on top. We probably made about 7 or 8 boxes each of them weighing 181 pounds!
Then once those were made we went back to the orange shed to grab some other items like tower sections. We then checked to make sure we had all of the different stations that we needed and we drove all of the very heavy stuff to science cargo to get packed up for the flight to WAIS.
After everything was packed, weighed, and strapped down on the palates, we made sure to inventory all of our items with the correct projects numbers, locations, and weights.
Lee and Dave have been working on wiring for the new South Pole stations; Henry and Nico. Otherwise there’s not too much other stuff we need to do to prep for our trips. We are hoping we can take our first helo flight on Saturday!
Otherwise, we have been able to participate in a weather balloon launch with Ang, go on a hikes to Hut Point and Observation Hill, and make a little video of Christmas cheer! Enjoy!