Sunday, December 12, 2004

Excitement at the Pole

Some interesting happenings at the Pole in the last few days. We had a mass casualty drill which was been in the works for sometime. The funny thing, they chose the remote RF building (satellite) to have it. Making Road Dog and David Bates important cogs. Looks like it went off as well as expected but basically cost the IT staff an entire afternoon.

We promptly lost the satellite the next day, the main amplifier blew. I, of course, had no idea until I was stopped by three different people in the coat room asking me when the satellite would be fixed. Dave Bates had spent the night at Happy Camper (Antarctic Camping Training - its cold out there)returned, sat in the sauna for an hour and prompt went back to the RF Building to help Road Dog track down the problem. The amp that blew had been rebuilt by the manufacturer for ~$13k and only been in operation for a month or so. It looks like Road Dog restored service around 3am today. This could affect communications for the rest of year, stay tuned for the dramatic outcome!

Sir Edmund Hillary visited McMurdo and called the South Pole last week. In case you are not aware of Sir Hillary's accomplishments here is a short blurb I found:
"Pictures of Sir Edmund Hillary in McMurdo’s Mac Ops speaking to South Pole Station on 11/29/04. Edmund Hillary was the first man to arrive overland at South Pole after Scott – and arrived in the first mechanized traverse.
Hillary is also the first man to summit Mt. Everest, with Tenzing Norgay."
If you goto to ROLEX.COM they talk about him a great deal as he tested the famous Explorer watch. Here is a picture:

Here is picture I found of the station on one of the few dusks that happen down here. I thought it was worth a look.

Back to work.


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