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Antarctic conservation

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Science talk

Posted by Cricket and Diana Nov 2, 2010

Posted by Diana

 

Date: October 27, 2010
Temperature: -19.5 degrees Celsius
Wind Speed: none
Temp with wind chill: -19.5 degrees Celsius
Sunrise: The sun is up!
Sunset  Next sunset February 20, 2011


The first explorers to Antarctica came with a sense of adventure and purpose. They conducted significant scientific and meteorological observations as well as exploration. Today the main emphasize on Ross Island is science. Scott Base is supporting 75 scientific events this summer. Many science events are supported at US base McMurdo Station and there is also the Albert P. Crary Science and Engineering Center. While working at Scott Base we have the good fortune of attending talks presented by the scientists. This week we went to a talk at McMurdo presented by a joint US French group who are using super pressure balloons to take reading over Antarctica to assist in monitoring the ozone http://www.antarcticconnection.com/antarctic/science/aeronomy.shtml.

 

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Galley Hall at McMurdo © AHT/Diana

 

Early on in our stay at Scott Base (winfly) I joined some folks in a walk up Observation Hill.  Back then it was still dark after dinner but there was light in the sky from aurora borealis and a full moon so it was possible to see a lot. From high up Ob Hill we looked back at McMurdo Station and saw a bright green laser beam shining up from one of the research groups and then one of the high pressure balloons were launched. Spectacular!  It was nice to have the opportunity to hear what this balloon was doing up there in the sky.

 

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The cross on Observation Hill that night at winfly © AHT/Diana

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  Balloon inflated, 4 February 1902  © CR Ford, Royal Geographical Society