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Archive for January 2010

Waiting for a Flight out of McMurdo

Many people here have stories of boomerangs, delays and canceled flights trying to get to or from Antarctica. So I must embrace my situation as a quintessential experience of visiting The Ice. I was originally scheduled to fly out of McMurdo Station for Christchurch, New Zealand on January 5th. This process began the evening before…

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Whether there is Weather

Weather drives everything in the United States Antarctic Program; flights happen or don’t, camps get re-supplied or don’t, work progresses or doesn’t. Even moderate winds in sub-freezing temperatures can make outdoor work difficult or impossible. Of course knowing weather conditions would make planning that much easier. But predicting the weather here is more complicated, and…

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Another Blog about WAIS Divide

McMurdo Station – Happy New Year! I am working on a few blog posts for the new year, so stay tuned. In the meantime, check out the blog of a science graduate student Heidi Roop, who is working at WAIS.  She is sponsored by the Exploratorium in San Francisco and took great video equipment into…

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Physical properties of Ice, or How to make an ice core sandwich. . .

Thin sections of glacier ice are incredibly beautiful. I love to gaze into these clear windows filled with little bubbles; some spherical, others oblong, all holding ancient air.  The ice refracts light from its crystal faces into multiple planes of shimmering color. I see them as lovely sculptures, but scientists prepare them to study the…

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