Would anyone like to send a postcard from the penguin post office in Antarctica?
As part of the 80th birthday of Port Lockroy Base (WAP GBR-Ø1) and the 30th anniversary of the charity, we’re offering the opportunity to send a limited edition postcard with a personalised message from Antarctica.
You can send postcard to yourself or a loved one and support the roof repair at the same time. Simply complete the form at the bottom of the page of the link below, make your donation of £20 and the Antarctic team will do the rest.
They need to raise over £50,000 to enable the conservation efforts this year. You can play a part in Antarctica by sending your postcard, making a donation or sharing this story with your friends. Thank you.
The 20th W.A.P. Meeting “Worldwide Antarctic Program”, together with the 22nd Diploma Castelli d’Italia e della Provincia di Cuneo” and the 14th I.F.F.A. Meeting “Italian Flora Fauna Award” took place on Sunday 17th September in Northen Italy on the hills of the City of Mondovì.
About a hundred Radio amateurs from different Italian regions and some European countries met to discuss radio and all the activities connected to it.
During the morning of Sunday 17 September one of the very important reports was presented by the Technical Award Manager of the Worldwide Antarctic Program, Massimo Balsamo IK1GPG, who addressed the problems inherent to long-distance radio contacts with the “White Continent” and the respective and interesting Antarctic Diplomas WAP-WACA and WAP-WADA, known as they are difficult to reach.
These long distance contacts (called DX) attract and are followed in particular by a good percentage of Radio Amateurs who can boast expertise and operational capacity as well as photographic archives and first-rate news on a global level.
The Australian expeditioner requiring urgent medical care has been airlifted in a “complex operation” from the Casey Research Station (WAP AUS-Ø2) in Antarctica to the icebreaker RSV Nuyina.
After breaking through sea ice, the Nuyina was able to reach a location near the Petersen Bank, about 144 kilometres from the research station, on Sunday, Sept.3rd.
“It’s the earliest we’ve ever gone to an Antarctic station, just a day or two after the official end of winter,” Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) acting general manager of operations Robb Clifton said.
The Nuyina is expected to arrive back in Hobart this week, depending on Southern Ocean weather conditions.
The ship first embarked on the rescue mission last week, travelling nearly 3,500 kilometres from Hobart.
Pierre D. Tromp, ZS1HF, passed away on September 4 at the age of 61.
Pierre has been active from Gough Island Station (WAP ZAF-Ø5) at 40° South, 9° West, and from the Old and New Marion Island Base (WAP ZAF-Ø6) 46° South, 37° East in the Southern Indian Ocean (See pic below; on theleft the Old Marion Base, on the right, the new one)
It was the time when amateur radio fashion was to use microphone or CW key exchanging RST and greetings and for us, radio veterans, that contacts were warm QSOs as opposed to the cold pressing of keys on a PC keyboard which i twill make for us an FT8 contact.
Pierre was a great operator and he was able to manage hours of pileup in a professional way. His voice was unmistakable and we still keep a good memory of him as well as his great activities as ZS8M (Marion Base) and ZD9M (Gough Station).
WAP together with Antarctic enthusiasts and followers, express their most sincere condolences to the family. R.I.P.
Australia has launched an urgent operation to rescue a researcher with a “developing medical condition” from the remote Casey Research Station (WAP AUS-Ø2) in Antarctica (picture aside).
The icebreaker RSV Nuyina left from Tasmania last week, the Australian Antarctic Program (AAP) said. It is travelling thousands of miles to reach the Research Station after an air rescue was ruled out due to harsh conditions. The AAP said the researcher, an Australian, needs specialist treatment but did not name the condition.
Casey research station is a journey of 2,139 miles (3,443km) from Hobart in Tasmania and one of three permanent Antarctic stations run by the AAP
The, has a top speed of 16 knots, or around 18 miles an hour, meaning a journey of several days. It is understood that an evacuation by air was not possible; the nearby (WAP AUS-Ø5) Wilkins Station’s aerodrome near Casey has an ice runway but is often unusable during the harsh winter.
Antarctic Heritage Trust has named twenty-two young explorers from across the country to embark on the trip of a lifetime. Explorers aged 18-30 will join the ninth Inspiring Explorers Expedition™, which is travelling to South Georgia Island.
Located in the remote South Atlantic Ocean, South Georgia Island has a reputation for the greatest density of wildlife on earth. It’s home to king penguins, fur seals, and 50 percent of the world’s southern elephant seals.
Not only is it the largest expedition yet, but it’ll also include the first Kiwi attempt of Mount Worsley in recognition of Kiwi explorer Frank Worsley, the mountain’s namesake.
In addition to the climbing team, each Inspiring Explorer will take part in an outreach project working in groups across topics such as climate change, education, history and science.
Smyley Island is an Antarctic island lying off the Antarctic Peninsula at coordinates (72°55′South, 78°0′West). The island is 61 km (38 mi) long and from 13 to 34 km (8 to 21 mi) wide and lies about 20 kilometers (12.4 miles) north of Case Island and the island connects to the Stange Ice Shelf. Smyley island is one of the 27 islands of Palmer Land, Antarctica and is separated from Alexander Island by the Ronne Entrance.
In 1939–1941 Smyley Island was first identified as a peninsula of mainland Antarctica by the United States Antarctic Service and was named Cape Smyley. In 1968 it was identified as an island on a U.S. Geological Survey map. The island is named after Captain William H. Smyley, the American master of the sealing vessel Ohio during 1841–42
A 497, a site on fast ice near Scorseby Head, on the northern shore of the island, has been designated an Important Bird Area (IBA) by BirdLife International because it supports a breeding colony of some 6,000 emperor penguins, based on 2009 satellite imagery.
A catastrophic die-off of emperor penguin chicks has been observed in the Antarctic, with up to 10,000 young birds estimated to have been killed. The event, in late 2022, occurred in the west of the continent in an area fronting on to the Bellingshausen Sea.
The sea-ice underneath the chicks melted and broke apart before they could develop the waterproof feathers needed to swim in the ocean. The birds most likely drowned or froze to death.
Dr Peter Fretwell, from the British Antarctic Survey (BAS), said the wipeout was a harbinger of things to come. The scientists tracked five colonies in the Bellingshausen Sea sector – at Rothschild Island, Verdi Inlet, Smyley Island (picture above), Bryan Peninsula and Pfrogner Point.
Inexpressible Island is a small rocky island in Terra Nova Bay on the Ross Sea.
The attached Map of the Victoria Land coast show at the bottom, the location of Inexpressible Island very close o the Italian MZS Station (WAP ITA-Ø1)
Inexpressible Island is most notable for being where the “Northern party” of Scott’s 1910-1913 expedition had to endure an enforced winter. Their ship the Terra Nova could not pick them up as planned in February 1912 due to particularly heavy pack ice.
The six men passed a particularly miserable winter with just four weeks worth of rations which were supplemented by killing penguins or seals that they found though these were few and far between .
They dug an ice cave and built a rock shelter, though suffered greatly from frostbite, hunger and dysentery. They gave the name “Inexpressible Island” in recognition of how awful the place and time they spent there was.
They remained on Inexpressible Island until the last day of September 1912 when they set off on the 200 miles journey to Hut Point arriving on November the 5th despite great illness, discomfort and a lack of supplies.
The location of the ice cave on Inexpressible Island is a Category 1 site as classified by the Antarctic Heritage Trust and receives protection under the Antarctic Treaty.
China is building his 5th Antarctic Station just on Inexpressible island
Picture above show the Cairn and sign marking site of “Campbell’s Igloo” on Inexpressible Island. In January 1912 six men of Scott’s ‘Terra Nova’ expedition, led by Lt Victor Campbell RN, were dropped off on this small island with the aim of exploring some of the coast of Victoria Land for a few weeks.
In the next five years in order to sustain its bases in Antarctica, India aims to have its first Polar Research Vessel (PRV) as told by Union Earth Sciences Minister Kiren Rijiju.
He noted that in 2014, the Cabinet had approved Rs 1,051 crore to acquire the vessel. A tender was also floated for the same. The government later abandoned the project as the company which had got the order to build the ship raised certain conditions that were not part of the tender process.
“However another effort was initiated and now, we are ready with the proposal to be moved by the EFC (Expenditure Finance Committee),” Mr Rijiju said.
The cost of the vessel is now estimated to be ₹ 2,600 crore, he noted. “I am hopeful that in this financial year, we should be ready to propose this estimate and move in the Cabinet. In the next five years, we should be ready with the ship,” Mr Rijiju stated.
The PRV will play a crucial role in supporting India’s bases in Antarctica and the Arctic. India currently operates three research base stations in the polar regions, and continuous access to these stations is essential for conducting various research activities, especially those related to climate change.
Apart from logistical support, a PRV can serve as a research platform for scientists to conduct studies in the ocean realm, including the Southern Ocean. This vessel’s acquisition is crucial as it will enable India to carry out independent polar expeditions and scientific studies in these critical regions, rather than having to charter foreign PRVs for each expedition.
. India currently has three Research Base Stations in the polar region of Antarctica: Bharati (WAP IND-Ø4), Maitri (WAP IND-Ø3), and Dakshin Gangotri (WAP IND-Ø1) and one station Himadri at 78°55 North, 11°55 East on Spitsbergen island in the Arctic (picture on the right).
Himadriis India’s first permanent Arctic Research Station located at at the International Arctic Research complex, Ny-Alesund. It was set up during India’s second Arctic expedition in June 2008 and inaugurated on the 1st of July, 2008 by the Indian Minister of Earth Science.
The Kerguelen archipelago, closer to Antarctica than to any other inhabited land, is located in what was called the “Roaring Forties belt”. With this name the sailors at the time of sailing ships and geographical explorations called the ocean area which runs almost continuously around the globe between the latitudes of forty and fifty degrees of the southern hemisphere; the name gives a good idea of the navigation conditions of the waters. Also known as the Desolation Islands, the Kerguelen archipelago consists of 300 islands, islets, and reefs which lie between 48° to 50° South and 68° to 70° East, covering an area of 7,215 km² (2,786 mi²) .
The main Island is Grande Terre. Port aux Français located on the Grande Terre Island (675 km2 or 2,577 sq mi) is the main center and is the site of a scientific base (WAP FRA-Ø4) .
The most incredible building in “Port aux Français” is certainly the chapel of Notre Dame des Vents (Our Lady of the Winds), built in the 1950s: the southernmost French place of worship on the planet. A few tens of meters halfway between the chapel and the sea, there is a famous statue of the Our Lady and Child.
During the year, the chapel sometimes hosts an officiant who celebrates mass in the Catholic rite. A pleasant glimmer of spirituality in such a remote place, almost another planet, which has always been seen only as a piece of land to be exploited.
The statue of the Virgin and Child is located between the Chapel of Notre Dame des Vents (Our Lady of the Winds) and the Gulf of Morbihan
WAP-WACA and WAP WADA Awards have been (and still are) two prestigious diplomas for several decades. Radio amateurs who love long-distance contacts and DX in particular with the Antarctic Continent, consider them among the most coveted awards.
Every year, the ranking is updated as well as the diplomas issued. Just check the links beloww to enter in each of this ones!
On 28 July, UKAHT(UK Antarctic Heritage Trust) turned 30.
For three decades, they have had the privilege to conserve Antarctica’s unique heritage, share the continent’s ever-evolving stories and inspire others to see and experience Antarctica differently through innovative technology, art and culture.
“While we’re using the moment to celebrate our successes (and grab a truly unique slice of cake), it is also a time to look forward. Antarctica is complex, fragile and rapidly changing – and so too is its heritage. As such, UKAHT must also keep evolving and rethinking our role to best champion our cherished sites and
Ultimately though, as a charity, we couldn’t have done it without you, our supporters.
We are eternally grateful for all of your help in protecting and celebrating this precious place, then, now and into the future.
Visit UKAHT web site atUKAHT – Home and subscribe the newsletter to receive updates, news and blogs
Our attentive readers and WAP follower know that DL8JDX did join last year with an Expedition Cruise to Antarctica where he retourned after a long absence at the beginning of 2023.
It is worth remembering that Volker Strecke DL8JDX, did winter over three times in Antarctica, in the season 1988-1989, 1990-1992 and 1992-1994 as communication electronician and radio operator at the German stations.
Volker did travel to the South in January 2023 and now (july 2023), he is on board “World Voyager” ship for another expedition cruise, this time in the Arctictic as lecturer and expedition guide.
Volker sends greetings from Longyearbyen in the Svalbard (78°12’ North) where the ship stopped on last July 24th.
Giant under water landslides induced in Antarctica by the climate crisis might lead to tsunami waves with the potential to cause a “substantial loss of life far from their origin”, according to a new study. Underwater landslides are global hazards that can displace large volumes of sediment and generate killer tsunamis. For instance, a submarine landslide near Papua Nwe Guinea in 1998 generated tsunami waves that killed 2,200 people. Researchers, including those from the University of Plymouth in the US, discovered that between 3 and 15 million years ago, during a past period of global heating, loose sediment layers slipped in Antarctica, triggering giant tsunamis that ravaged the shores of New Zealand, southeast Asia and South America. In the new study, published recently in the journal Nature Communications, scientists found extensive layers of weak, fossilised and biologically rich sediment hundreds of metres beneath the seafloor. Read more at:Scientists warn climate crisis could trigger giant killer tsunamis resulting in ‘huge loss of life’ | The Independent
Interesting is the chart provided by Climatologist Cliff Harris and Meteorologist Randy Mann.
They said: We should remember, that the Earth’s coldest periods have usually followed excessive warmth. Such was the case when our planet moved from the Medieval Warm Period between 900 and 1300 A.D. to the sudden “Little Ice Age,” which peaked in the 17th Century. Since 2,500 B.C., it’s estimated that there have been over 70 major climate changes worldwide, including two major changes in just the past 50 years. In terms of upcoming cooling and warming periods, only time will tell.
SANAE 1 team member, Marten du Preez (Radio Technician), passed away at the age of 96. WAPconveys deepest condolences to his family and friends.
Marten du Preez (pic aside) was one of the members on the first overwintering team on Antarctica, SANAE I, as well as the team leader of SANAE 3. WAP does not have any QSLs or even any callsigns used by operators at SANAE 1 and , SANAE 2 Bases. Any info will be extra appreciated! TNX Gabry IK1NEG
1959 to 1962: Establishment of a permanent South African presence in Antarctica
On 1 December 1959 South Africa joined Countries like the USA, USSR, UK, Chile and Japan in signing the Antarctic Treaty.
South Africa established a permanent presence on the Antarctic continent in the 1959 to 1960 summer when the first South African National Antarctic Expedition (SANAE), a ten man party under the leadership of the veteran Hannes la Grange, took over Norway Station (WAP NOR-Ø7) at 70° 30′ South, 02° 52′ West, along with its 12 male husky sledge dogs.
The picture on the left, taken by Andre le roux van der Merwe a medical doctor of the first South African Expedition (SANAE) to Antarctica shows the first South Africa’s Team at SANAE 1, 1960
(Back:Andre van der Merwe, Dick Bonnema, Hannes la Grange, Marten du Preez, Blackie de Swardt. Middle: George Strauss, Niek Ersamus, Chris de Weerdt. Front: Victor von Brunn, Theo van Wyk)
All ten members of the expedition were employed by the South African Weather Bureau. The station was situated 35 km from the ice front at an altitude of 52 m.
Norway Station had been established for the International Geophysical Year in 1957 to 1958 with Sigurd Helle as leader at the time of transfer. The former Norwegian base (WAP NOR-Ø7) was only used for two years before SANAE I.
The South African expedition sailed south from Cape Town aboard the converted Norwegian sealer Polarbjom on 3 December 1959, reaching the continent, via Bouvetoya, at Polarsirkel Bukta on 8 January 1960. Veteran Allan Crawford was aboard as naval meteorologist. The voyage south was eventful: two members of the Polarbjorn’s crew died on the southern journey: a steward who fell overboard while emptying an ashtray over the side and the Second Mate, Reidulv Klein, who blew himself up in his cabin while preparing explosives. The latter was buried at sea in the pack-ice, with both Norwegian and South African flags at half mast. Later, the ship had difficulty progressing through the pack but the situation was solved by the timely arrival of the Argentine icebreaker General San Martin. Surface and upperair meteorological and geomagnetic observations, commenced by the Norwegians at the station in 1956. were taken over on 15 January 1960. Glaciological and geological fieldwork and bird observations, including finding breeding snow petrels (Pagodroma nivea), were also made during the first SANAE during a five-week field trip with huskies to several nunataks in the northern Ahlmannryggen by Hannes la Grange and Professor Victor on Brurm in November/ December 1960.
Since then a team of 14 men went there for 14 months at a time on a regular annual basis to study aspects like the weather, astrology, the magnetic field of the earth, cosmic rays and the ozone attenuation. The South African base used to be on the pack ice where it stretches more than 200 km into the sea, only 15 km from the spot where the sea and the ice meet. SANAE II was built in 1971 and SANAE III in 1979. Since then they have used a steel construction, necessitating a new base only every 13 years .
Both Directories contain last WAP references issued and several new entries that years after years make them updated and constitute a unique tool of its kind, totally free and available to anyone and in every corner of the World who is somehow passionate about Antarctica, even if the two directories are especially dedicated to Radio amateurs.
The Club“Russian Robinson” unites radio amateurs from many countries of the world and popularizes amateur radio activities in the field of polar island and sea expeditions
To celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of the Russian Robinson Club, Oleg UA6 GG (HOME | dx-trophy (dxtrophy.com)) is now making various stamps for members of the Robinson Club.
Pictures hereby, show the series of stamps with our good friend Valery RW3GW , famous DX operator and activator of many rare spots in the Arctic and Antarctica.
In honor of celebration Russian Robinson has just updated its site, and there are additional intems of interest such as “Special Stations” that works in the plans of the 30th Anniversary of the Club. Pay a visit and enjoy it: Главная | My Site (robinsons.ru)
Valery Sushkov RW3GW is the official Minister of Posts and Communications of the Kingdom of North Barchant, traveler-researcher, postal historian, president of the National Academy of Research and Discovery “Russian Traveler” .
Valery Sushkov took part in the radio program “Wild Environment” on the Mayak-Lipetsk radio channel.
WAP, is greateful to Valery RW3GW and Oleg UA6GG for their continuous commitment to improve the WW interest around all the new proposals marked by the Ham Radio friendship focusing in new Radio expeditions and several new activities involving the world of radio amateurs.
Here above, some pictures with our friends Valery Sushkov RW3GW, RZ3EM Andy A. Novikov and RZ3EC Eugene Shelkanovtsev.
(here aside from L to R: RZ3EM, RW3GW, RZ3EC)
It’s a real sad news for the whole WW DX Community and in particular to us of WAP, learning of the death of a long time dear friend; George Georgiy Chliyants, UY5XE from Lviv , Ukraina, has passed away few days ago at the age of 75.
In the early 80es , George has been one of the first founders and promoters of the Russian Robinson Club where he still held the position of consultant.
It was George who pushed me in 1993 at the IOTA convention in Torremolinos (Spain) to introduce the RRC in that important WW event. Today, thanks also to George, RRC has over 2000 members
UY5XE was active Radio Amateur, holder of many amateur radio awards active DXer and Contester, keen activator of arctic islands and QSL manager of many of the Russian expedition in the Arctic and Antarctica.
Author of books about radio amateurs and the history of the radio amateur community.
We will miss his friendship but we are certain that he will watch us from the heaven and watch over friendship between peoples in the spirit that distinguishes The Ham Radio world.
China has resumed construction of its fifth research facility in Antarctica after a years-long lull.
The report said the new station, on Inexpressible Island at 74° 54′ South, 163° 39′ East, at Terra Nova Bay in the Ross Sea, is expected to include an observatory with a satellite ground station, and should help China “fill in a major gap” in its ability to access the continent, said the report. The fifth Chinese station is located about 26 km from the italian Mario ZucchelliStation (WAP ITA-Ø1), and Jang Bogo Station (WAP KOR-Ø2), then at 390 km Northwest of McMurdo (WAP USA-22) and ScottBase (WAP NZL-Ø1)
Construction is estimated to be finished by 2024.
“The 1959 Antarctic Treaty restricts activities on the continent to “peaceful purposes” and allows military personnel to conduct scientific research, but bans the setting up of bases or carrying out maneuvers or testing weapons”.
Inexpressible Island, located in the Terra Nova Bay of Antarctica’s Victoria Land, is a rocky island where the Northern Party of Robert Falcon Scott’s Terra Nova Expedition of 1910 – 1913 was forced to overwinter in 1912.
White Desert Company has recently opened a brand New Echo Camp in Antarctica at 71°32’47” South, 08°50’11” East, approximately 100 km (62 miles) from the coast at 1130 mts (3700 fts) above the sea
Inspired by the seminal age of Space exploration, Echo Camp sits in quiet solitude encircled by pitted rock formations. Echo is as close as one can get to feeling like you’re off the planet without leaving Earth.
After three years of planning, 80 tonnes of air cargo and over 1,000 square meters of moulded composite fiberglass, Echo Base opened on 8th December 2022, is a reality. So much effort, so much investment, so many norm-breaking ideas were wrapped up in this new camp. It represented a totally new forward-looking vision of tourism in Antarctica – it was a lot to live up to.
The “Cosmos”, the central hub, is formed of four separate rooms all connected by tunnels that look like the docking station to a spaceship. Inside, the ‘sky pods’ are no less futuristic, with vast floor-to-ceiling windows that bring the ageless landscape of Antarctica inside each lounge, bar or dining space. Even in the comfort and warmth of these living areas, I was connected to the environment. Padded walls encircle a delicate Art Deco bar, while an Anthony James art sculpture glows like a giant power source at one end. Walking through the tunnel I discover a library and daybed with someone napping under a cashmere blanket. The sign on the door read “Decompression Chamber”
WAPhas added Echo Base Camp, on WAP WADA Directory as WAP MNB-NEW. Oleg ZS1ANF/ZS7ANF said: Echo Camp is about 4 km away from Wolf’s Fang Runway WAP MNB-12. There is electricity there. As usual it is necessary a tent and an antenna. Well, the most scarce is time. I can’t promise, but I will keep in mind!
. TNX Oleg Latyshev UA6GG and Oleg Sakharov ZS1ANF/ZS7ANF
Friedrichshafen is a place to go at least once … Personally (I1HYW) I have been there 35 years ago more or less and it was amazing to meet lots of DXers and Hamradio friends in a very magic athmosphere.
This year (2023) our friend Volker DL8JDX was there and we are happy to get pics from him. Volker did meet the cream of the WW DX, those who have marked the last months DX-peditions and activities from rare spots as well as those who have seasoned in Antarctica for a short and long while. (pic on the Left show MØSDV, DL8JDX, MØOXO)
WAPis pleased to share some of the pics with our readers, also because some of the men shown in the pics are really Antarctic Veterans
At the Antarctic Dinner Meeting (pic aside) there were: DK5HH, DM2KX, DL3LRM, HB9HCF, HB9BRH, DL8JDX, DC1TH, DJ0HO, DL5XL, DK3ZL. Theresa, DC1TH brought a model of the Neumayer 3 Station to the meeting. She printed all parts of this model with a 3D Printer.
Here below some other pics:
Meeting with ZL3CW, VE3LYC (3Y0J), F6AJA, the owner of the QSL card gallery and DL8JDX (pic to the left)
Meeting with DL7VEE, DL5EBE, DL8JDX (pic to the right)
Meeting with DL8JDX, F6CUK (FT8WW), F8TRT
(pic to the left)
And finally – told Volker– some impressions from my todays flight with a Zeppelin NT airship.
Friedrichshafen at the lake Bodensee (in English translation it is also called lake Constance) is the historical home of Zeppelin airships.
ARGENTINA With the celebration of the winter solstice in the Southern Hemisphere, the “Antarctic Fellowship Day” is also commemorated in recognition of all Antarctics for their hidden work and shared vocation to maintain Antarctica as a continent dedicated to peace andscience.
Eveyone in Antarctica celebrates on june 21st the winter solstice, the shortest day of the year and the turning point in the long, dark Antarctic winter. Australian Antarctic traditions have a long heritage – in fact it’s been more than 75 years since of the formation of Australian National Antarctic Research Expeditions (ANARE) – now the Australian Antarctic Program. The first ANARE landed on Heard Island (WAP AUS-Ø7) on 26 December 1947. Three months later, Macquarie Island (WAP AUS-Ø8) was established. ANARE led directly to the formation of the ‘Antarctic Division’ in May 1948 and the appointment of Dr Phillip Law as its first ‘Director’ in January 1949. On this special day, AAD suggest to take a look at where they have come from and where they’re headed, in the celebratory video @AusAntarctic Science TV : Click on the link https://youtu.be/L8_WVh-Ul1A and enjoy it! TNX AAD
Today, June 21st , researchers of the Antarctic Continent celebrate Midwinter!
This is the main holiday of polar explorers, which marks the Midwinter, the shortest day and the longest night, but then, gradually, the days become longer, and summer is closer and closer.
Overwintering people in Antarctica have many traditions associated with this holiday, the main one, is to send a group greetings photo to the rest of the world and to colleagues from other Countries.
The culmination of this day is also a plunge into the icy ocean where this is available, a traditional bathing that is considered “initiation” into wintering.
. WAPhas got the 1st one from the 28th UAE Team, at Vernadsky BaseWAP UKR-Ø1 and another one from Concordia Station, WAP MNB-Ø3 wheer researchers from different Nations are working jointly in the dark of the long Polar night.
While waiting for other greeting pictures from other friends, down South, WAPwish the overwintering personnel from any Nations actually in Antarctica a wonderful celebration.
A 50 Mhz multimode Antarctic radio beacon has been installed at Esperanza Base (WAP ARG-Ø4), Argentine Antarctic Territory. Locator: GC16MO
The purpose of the radio beacon is to provide the world’s radio amateur community with a tool
for propagation studies and detect openings in the 6m band, operating 24 hours a day all year
from the Esperanza Joint Antarctic Base in Argentine Antarctic Territory.
For this purpose, a new concept of operation was designed to take advantage of the automatic reception and recording systems that operate in the world such as PSK Reporter and CW.
Skimmer and at the same time that it can be received by radio amateurs that operate in FT8 and Morse code radiotelegraphic mode. auditory reception in real time.
For this purpose, the 50.313 MHz radio frequency was selected, which is the one used in FT8 mode and with the most traffic in the world.
The FT8 signal is emitted at 2500 Hz so as not to affect normal QSO traffic, likewise the CW signal is emitted at the same frequency to be detected manually or automatically by other systems. In FT8 mode it is broadcast both in odd and even sequence to allow its reception regardless of the operational configuration of the radio amateurs at any given time. The broadcast sequence is:
Chronogram according to the seconds of the minute.
00) CQ BCN LU1ZV GC16 (en FT8)
15) ESPERANZA BCN (en FT8)
30) VVV DE LU1ZV BCN GC16 AR (en CW)
45) stand by.
Transmit power: 3W, Half wave dipole antenna on sloper facing north.
Conceptual design:Andrés Travainni LU3HO & Alejandro Alvarez LU8YD Hardware and software design, as well asConstruction and donation: Andrés Travainni LU3HO Antenna: Alejandro Alvarez LU8YD Installation at Base Esperanza:Alejandro Alvarez LU8YD, Juan Benavente LU8DBS and Alejandro Petrecca
Last 2022-2023 Summer Antarctic campaign has seen our friend Oleg Sakharov, ZS1ANF operating again from 2 rare spots in Antarctica; Wolf’s Fang Runway (WAP MNB-11) and Wichaway Camp (WAP MNB-12). Oleg did use his Antarctic callsign ZS7ANF and was active mostly on CW in the evening time, on 20 & 40 mts.
The WFR (WAP MNB-11) is a Skyway located at 71° 31′ South, 08° 48′ East , 3000 meters long, 60 meters wide at 1127meters AMSL. The supply chain is provided with the assistance of the South African science vessel; fuel supply is delivered to the edge of Antarctica, then a traverse team embarks on a journey of 800km across the Fimbul ice shelf to Wolf’s Fang Runway. Oleg ZS7ANF has to take care of the logistic & communications and when he has some spare time, the HF radio is his best company!
The other rare spot activated on February 2023 by Oleg, has been Wichaway Camp (WAP MNB-12). Whichaway Camp at 71º 32’ 00” South, 08º 50’ 00” East is unique and the perfect base from which to start a fantastic Antarctic journey, where luxury and adventure meets in the mountains of Queen Maud Land. Whichaway Camp has won the World Travel Awards five times, the Camp is also designed with a minimal environmental footprint in mind. Oleg has got a chance to operate from there for a very limited time on last mid february 2023 and now, his QSL is in our Album!
White Desert Company which manage these fantastic sites, has recently opened another one, a brand new Echo Camp (WAP MNB-NEW) at 71° 32′ 47″ South, 08° 50′ 11″ East. Inspired by the seminal age of Space exploration, Echo Camp sits in quiet solitude encircled by pitted rock formations. Echo is as close as you can get to feeling like you’re off the planet without leaving Earth.
Hope some days in the near future, to get a a chance to log this brand new one as well!
Thanks Oleg Sakharov ZS7ANF for his always great operation. TNX for the beautiful cards printed by DX Trophy at HOME | dx-trophy (dxtrophy.com) of UA6GG, Oleg Latyshev
From June 23 to 25, 2023, HAM RADIO will take place in Friedrichshafen on Lake Bodensee. The trade fair company and the conceptual sponsor, DARC e.V., are currently working on three days of full program for the 46th edition of this successful trade fair. Radio amateurs are experts in communication! Amateur radio is considered an advanced professional qualification for the fields of engineering, computer science, electrical engineering and communications technology. In the labor market, there is a strong demand for students who have degrees in these industries. Radio amateurs live and love technology. The members of the German Amateur Radio Club e.V. pass on this passion to young people in the local associations and set the first impulses for the fascination of technology and the understanding of it..
The Amateur Radio enthusiasts are spread all over the globe and can hardly wait to meet up with old friends, make new contacts and spend the next three days together.
Volker Strecke DL8JDX (ex: Y88POL, DP0GVN) has just informed WAP that next Friday 23. June 2023 at the Friedrichshafen City at the Restaurant Kommodore , there will be a meeting with Antarctic Radio Operators. It will be a fantastic chance to shake hands and listen to the reports of activities from Antarctica as well as to know the plans for next Antarctic season 2023-2024. DL5XL, DC1TH, DK1BT, DL8JDX have already confirmed their presence; and some others will be there…..
Reservation has already been booked for the dinner at Kommodore – Württembergischer Yacht Club, Uferstr. 34, 88045 Friedrichshafen, directly at the coast of Lake Bodensee on 23.6.2023 from 6.30 p.m. for 10 people is confirmed.
For more info or request to meet inside the Exhibition Center get in touch with Volker DL8JDX, cellphone. +49 172 3704670, e-mail email@example.com
Oleksandr Gryshko the current Captain of the only Ukraine ice-class research vessel “Noosphere” turns 40 today. His Grandfather and father were senior mechanics, and Oleksandr’s older brother was also a Captain.
“I am proud that I have the opportunity to be useful for Ukraine and contribute to its polar research,” Oleksandr remarked.
Being the Captain of a ship going to the Antarctic is an extraordinary challenge. To become a polar Captain, one need to have significant experience in ship and crew management, to get additional education and qualification, learn practical skills from an experienced Polar Captain.
When Ukraine purchased the James Clark Ross icebreaker from the UK in 2021 (later it became the Noosphere), it was the first ice-class vessel of Ukraine in the last 20 years. “Noosphere” went on its first Antarctic voyage (2022) under the leadership of experienced British polar Captain Simon Wallace. His experience was taken over by Ukrainian captain Pavlo Panasyuk, who after that began to manage the ship himself.
In the second Antarctic season of “Noosphere” (2022-2023), Pavlo Panasyuk already transferred knowledge to Oleksandr Gryshko, who at that time, had 20 years of experience working in various seas. The first part of the ship’s journey was from Cape Town to the Polish Antarctic station Arktowsky (WAP POL-Ø1), then to Vernadsky (WAP UKR-Ø1), and from there, to Punta Arenas (Chile).
After this voyage, Capt.Oleksandr Gryshko already managed the ship himself. He was supposed to complete the second part of the Antarctic mission of “Noosphere”: return to Vernadsky, later to “Arktovsky”, ensuring changes of polar explorers at both stations, and reach Cape Town. The captain successfully coped with this task despite all the storms.
The vessel, arrived at Harwich in Essex on Tuesday, May 30th.The crew completed its polar science trials during what was a seven-month mission.
The 129m (423ft) Polar ship is due to leave again on 8 June for refitting work in Rosyth, Scotland, before being used for further trials on the Scottish coast.
The boat departed Harwich in November last year, before a three-week voyage to the Falkland Islands, and then onward to the Rothera Research Station at Antarctica. A team of 37 scientists were left at Bird Island (WAP GBR-23), King Edward Point (WAP GBR-24) and Rothera (WAP GBR-12) to carry out further research.
The ship is scheduled to return to Antarctica for a third season in late October 2023.
Unfortunately a very marginal HF activity has been performed from onboard so far. Hams WW are looking for a chance to put a new Polar ship on their Logs …let’s hope!
For now, thanks to Mike GM0HCQ/MM for his very short activity
WAP has received some notes sent by Alejandro LU8YD the operator at Esperanza Base (WAP ARG-Ø4) in February and March 2023 and at LU4ZS Marambio Base (WAP ARG-21) in April 2023.
Alejandro wrote: In the austral summer of 2023 at Esperanza Base (WAP ARG-Ø4) we did operate LU1ZV on all bands (160 trough 6 meters) on SSB, CW, FM, FT8, FT4 and Opera, together with Juan Carlos Benavente LU8DBS and Juan Pablo Arena LU6DX .
According to the information in our hands, the 2023’s Ham radio activity would have been the largest operation from Antarctica in bands and modes with extraordinary results on 6 meters and perhaps the first to operate on FT8, FT4 and FM on 29 MHz in addition to the new 60 meter band. All the hamradio operation are performed from inside the building of LRA36 Radio Nacional Arcangel San Gabriel, using its rombic antenna
On the other hand, we have participated in two international competitions; the South American Lighthouse Weekend and extensive research work on Antarctic radio propagation. We left a 6m radio beacon running 24/7 (24 hours a day, 7 days a week) to study propagation. The LU1ZV February – March operation reached the approximate amount of 13,000 QSOs. April 2023 operation, add other 2500 QSOs.
Currently and for a few more months, LU1ZV is only operated by LU8DBS, Juan C. Benavente on SSB and FT8. The LU1ZV activations have the support of the “Uniendo Voces” a project of the National University of Quilmes (Buenos Aires province).
Just about LU4ZS, LU1HCQ operates for the remainder of the year 2023.
My professional assignment in Antarctica Argentina, says Alejandro, was to work on the improvement of LRA36 station and to assist in the maintenance of Antarctic radio communications of these two Argentine bases.
Just to remind the Readers and Antarctic hunters the LU1ZV/B 50 MHz radio beacon, in its CW & FT8 multimode modality at 50.313 MHz.
Kapp Fie , 54° 27′ South, 3° 28′ East, at the South East side of Bouvetøya (Bouvet Island), has been issued a reference NOR-14 on WAP-WADA Directory.
QSL Manager MØOXO is busy to send the cards which are now coming on the mail.
The Expedition set his Camp at CapeFie (aka Kapp Fie), at the South East part of Bouvet island the only the only moderately safe place to stay . Those who have followed the vicissitudes of such a difficult expedition will certainly have lived with the operators the most dangerous moments of this adventure which will remain in the annals of WW DX-peditions!
Cape Fie almost certainly won’t be repeated, so whoever has had the ability and luck to work 3Y0J, can be sure of having hit the mark
WAPwishes to express a sincere thanks to the daring Operators of this dangerous and at the same time fascinating adventure.
The Bulgarian Polar Research Vessel “Sv. Sv. Kiril i Metodiy (RSV-421)” is owned by a consortium consisting of the Naval Academy, the St Kliment Ohridski University of Sofia and the Bulgarian Antarctic Institute. The Sv. Sv. Kiril i Metodii was ceremoniously christened and commissioned into the Bulgarian Navy inventory on July 27, 2021.
Before the ship’s first polar mission, it was repaired, modernised and refitted in Varna. On December 27, 2022, RSV 421 set sail from Varna Marine Station, marking the beginning of the 31st Bulgarian Antarctic Expedition to the Bulgarian Polar Base on Livingston Island, part of the South Shetland Islands. The ship was loaded with building materials and equipment needed for the construction of a laboratory as part of the Bulgarian Base.
After a 127-day voyage to the Bulgarian base on Livingston Island and back, the first Bulgarian naval research vessel Sv. Sv. Kiril i Metodii (RSV 421) returned home, docking Tuesday May 2nd 2023 at the Varna Marine Station.
In the way back home, the Bulgarian naval Research Vessel Sv. Sv. Kiril i Metodii (RSV 421) crossed the Ionian Sea along its southern boundary with the Mediterranean, sailing eastwards, in the evening hours of April 23, 2023.
Now the Polar ship is docked at Bulgarian port city of Varna (on the Black Sea) after fully completing its participation in the 31st Bulgarian Antarctic Expedition to Livingston Island, Antarctica
With the sailing of the first military Research Vessel Sv. Sv. Kiril i Metodii (RSV 421) to Antarctica, Bulgaria has proven itself to be a Maritime and Polar Nation, said Prof. Hristo Pimpirev last Tuesday, May 2nd, in Varna, when at the local Marine Station he did wait to meet the returning RSV 421 which docked at 10 a.m. After the ship docks, scientists will take the samples collected during the expedition and start examining them.
Antonio Huneeus Gana Summer Base was a semi-permanent Chilean Antarctic Camp, located in the Chilen Antarctic Territory, in charge of the Chilean Antarctic Institute (INACH).
The Base is located at 80°18’ South, 81°20’ West, just 1 km from the Patriot Hills Camp (WAP MNB-Ø2) of the private company Adventure Network International at 80°18’07” South, 81°20’39” West,
The station takes his name from Don Antonio Huneeus Gana (1870-1951), Chilean Minister of Foreign Affairs , the first to think about Chile’s scientific interest in the Antarctic regions. On July 1906, Don Antonio Huneeus Gana asks the Minister of the Navy to prepare an expedition to Elephant Islands, New Orkney New Shetland and the Antarctic Continent”. in order to verify a reconnaissance of lands and seas and to carry out scientific research, especially magnetic, according to the communication.
On January 2009 , Adam Brown K2ARB was operating from Antonio Huneeus Gana Base as CE9/K2ARB qualifying the issue the reference WAP CHL-15 on WAP-WADA Directory.
WAP doesn’t have evidence of any other Hamrdio operation from Antonio Huneeus Gana Base before Adam Brown K2ARB, so CE9/K2ARB remains the unique one so far toh ave operated from that rare Chilean Base, unless we will find some other old one!
Prof. Lyubomir Ivanov is the National Representative of Bulgaria to SCAR SCAGI and Chairman of the Antarctic Place-names Commission at Ministry of Foreign Affairs-Republic of Bulgaria. Lyubo is Chairman, Toponymic Board at National Centre for Polar Studies as well.
WAPreaders might be interested to know of a recently published Bulgarian map of Bowles Ridge and Tangra Mountains on Livingston Island, South Shetlands (SCAR Map # 15864).
Livingston Island was discovered on 19 February 1819 by the Briton William Smith and was the first land now governed by the international Antarctic Treaty system. The first inhabitants of the island were American and British seal hunters, and their are the early geographical discoveries and toponyms in the area. Seal hunters today are inherited by scientists, as well as fishermen, among whose pioneers last century are the Bulgarians from Ocean Fishing – Burgas. Today, Bulgaria is connected to the island through annual expeditions and scientific research, as well as the responsibility to map the region for the needs of all human activities related to the exploration of Antarctica and the exploitation of its resources.
Prof. Ivanov said: «The map is an early example of mapping based on the Reference Elevation Model of Antarctica (REMA) developed by The Ohio State University and the University of Minnesota, a rather promising approach indeed».
Hard copies of the map could be purchased from Librum. (see an electronic version of the map hereby aside sent by our friend Lyubo).
We did ask Prof Ivanov about Ham operators at the Bulgarian Base St Kliment Ohridski (WAP BUL-Ø1)or if any activity is planned from there on next summer Antarctic Campaign … maybe some Ham radio operator can put the Bulgarian Base on the air after nearly 20 years!!! Last one active was VP8/LZ1UQ in 2006 and before LZØA on 1995.
Lyubomir replied: «I do not think there will be any Ham operator at the Bulgarian base in the next season, nor on our Antarctic naval Research Ship “Sv. sv. Kiril i Metodiy” (English: Sts. Cyril and Methodius) for that matter, but if I find out otherwise, I would let you know»
TNX Prof. Lyubomir Ivanov and congrats for you continuous and invaluable work.
At the beginning, it was also known as Chapel of St. Dismas (see the life od St. Dismas at the bottom of this page) after the good thief. Originally there were neither plans nor materials requisitioned to build a chapel, so, they “found” extra materials and built it on their own time. Father Ron O’Gorman of the Christchurch Diocese traveled on an icebreaker and was the first New Zealand priest to celebrate Mass in Antarctica, Dec. 25, 1957.
In preparation for Antarctic research to be conducted during the International Geophysical Year (1957-1958), U.S. Naval Construction Battalion personnel (Seabees) began building McMurdo Station during the 1955-1956 austral summer. The original plans for the station did not include a chapel; instead, religious services were to be held in the station mess hall.
However, according Admiral George Dufek, who commanded Deep Freeze I, “As the construction of the buildings at McMurdo progressed a mysterious pile of lumber, planks, nails, Quonset hut sections, and assorted materials began to accumulate on a knoll overlooking the camp.” Just few years later the Chapel was renamend as Chapel of the Snow (aka Blue Chapel . Picture aside show how the Chapel was in 1963 and Blue Chapel 1968.
The Chaplain, Father John C. Condit, and volunteers from the construction battalion gradually gathered enough materials to build what was to become the first church ever erected in Antarctica. All of the work was done by volunteers after their daily duties were finished. Admiral Dufek also observed that “The men, after a hard day’s work, would drift over to the church site. Before the main camp was finished a tidy neat church with a steeple was to stand on a ridge overlooking the camp. Later it even had a bell, procured from a small gasoline tanker.” When the Chapel was completed, Father Condit had the world’s most southern parish.
The Chapel of the Snows at McMurdo Station was destroyed by fire on 22 August 1978. No one was injured, but the chapel and almost all its contents were a total loss. For 22 years this simple building provided a place of worship for personnel not only at McMurdo Station (WAP USA-22) but also from nearby Scott Base (WAP NZL-Ø1).
Year 1979. On Easter Sunday 1979, the second Chapel or the Temporary Chapel was dedicated. Here some details: A refurbishing of McMurdo Station was planned by the National Science Foundation, and a new chapel was included in the design. To replace the burned Chapel, volunteers converted a quonset Hut near the station’s main building. While they worked to complete this temporary Chapel, the Chalet served as the site for the community’s religious services. However, this building, which normally houses NSF and contractor offices, could not accommodate both Sunday morning services and daily administrative activities during the summer season.
The Temporary chapel built by the community was left abandoned until it too, suffered a fiery demise during a condition 1 storm on 18 May 1991. It caught fire and was totally destroyed.
Year 1989. The third chapel was designed to replace the previous temporary one in use as such after the 1978 fire until. The new building was dedicated in 1989.
Although the original chapel and the temporary building were built entirely by volunteers, the new building was constructed as part of the National Science Foundation’s plan to refurbish the McMurdo Station. The 2,016-square-foot wood structure contains office space, a central worship area that normally seats 63, and McMurdo’s only organ. Materials to complete the building were salvaged from older structures that were ripped down during the several-year rebuilding of the station.
McMurdo Station once again has a permanent place of worship. To commemorate this occasion, approximately 80 people gathered on Sunday, 29 January 1989 to dedicate the new Chapel of the Snows, which is the third chapel to be raised at the station.
The current Capel, the Chapel of the Snows, is the third in the history of McMurdo. It is the southernmost house of worship in the world.
The Life of Saint Dismas We don’t know much about the life of Dismas. Most of it is the subject of legend. A popular medieval legend surrounding Dismas’ life is:
While the Holy Family was fleeing to Egypt, they stopped to spend the night in a cave. Living in the cave was a family with a son about the same age as Jesus. Sadly, the infant had leprosy, which was a painful and contagious disease.Mary told the mother of the child to bathe him in the water she had just used to wash our Savior. The mother did as Mary instructed and instantly cured the child. The two boys grew up and learned the trade of their fathers. Jesus preached and went about His ministry. While the other became a thief, like his father.The two men met again on Calvary. One of the thieves, traditionally called Gestas, mocked Jesus claiming if He really was the Son of God he could save Himself and them as well.
But Dismas rebuked him saying that they were thieves and received their punishment justly but Jesus was falsely accused.Then turning to Jesus he apologized and asked, ” Lord, please remember me when you go into your kingdom.” Jesus replied, “Today you will be with Me in Paradise.” Dismas died around 33 in the year of Our Lord.
Saint Dismas’ Feast Day is March 25 and he is the patron of prisoners (especially condemned) and repentant thieves.
What follows is an abstract of a most complete past history of Castaway Depots (Huts) in the remote Sub Antarctic Islands of New Zealand. Most of the Huts and Depots in these islands are listed on the WAP WADA Directory and they just need to be visited by Hams to put such rare ones on the air.
The Snares Islands in particular (The Snares consist of the main North East Island WAP NZL-10 and the smaller Broughton island as well as the Western Chain Islands) , but also Antipodes Islands (The island group consists of one main island, Antipodes Island WAP NZL-11, Bollons Island to the North, and numerous small islets and stacks), and some never activated islands in the Aucklands Group (Auckland Island WAP NZL-Ø4 & NZL-Ø9 is surrounded by smaller Adams Island, Enderby Island WAP NZL-Ø8, Disappointment Island, Ewing Island, Rose Island, Dundas Island, and Green Island).
Also known as Castaway Huts, Castaway depots were small shelters strategically placed on isolated islands by governments or maritime organisations and equipped with basic supplies and tools to people who survived shipwrecked and found themselves stranded. These little isolated huts tell legendary stories of bravery, adventure and loss, passed down for generations, but was has become of them? Are there any left?
Picture aside: Snares Island Castaway Depot & Research Hut first built by the New Zealand government in the 1880s, is now maintained as an historic site by the Department of Conservation. The use of Castaway depots began in the 19th Century and continued into the 20th Century and typically contained items such as food, water, medical supplies, and other essential items that could help stranded seafarers survive until escape or rescue. The idea was started by the New Zealand government in the 19th century when it erected several depots scattered across the Chatham, Kermadec, and the Subantarctic Islands. One particular island, Disappointment Island, had been named as such due to the frequent occurrence of shipwrecks on the island and its extreme lack of resources. The small hut-like structures could withstand high winds and hurricanes as best as possible for as long as possible in the hopes of saving the lives of potentially shipwrecked men.
There are at least five notable shipwrecks that occurred on the Auckland Islands in which all or most of the crew was saved by the provisions left in castaway depots. The last shipwrecked crew to survive as castaways was the crew of the French barque President Felix Faure that was wrecked off the North Cape of Antipodes Island in 1908. The entire crew made it to shore close to a castaway depot. When all the supplies had been depleted, the crew hunted albatross, penguins, and a single calf; the sole remnant of the cattle that had been set ashore with other supplies by the Hinemoa, a New Zealand government service steamer that serviced and patrolled New Zealand territorial waters. The crew of was rescued by the HMS Pegasus and eventually made a successful return journey to France via Sydney. Thanks and credit: A Shipwrecked Sailor’s Guide to Castaway Depots (messynessychic.com)
Damoy Point is a headland 900 metres west-northwest of Flag Point, the northern entrance point to the harbour of Port Lockroy, on the western side of Wiencke Island in the Palmer Archipelago of Antarctica. It was discovered and named by the French Antarctic Expedition, 1903–05, under Jean-Baptiste Charcot.
Wiencke Island 64° 49′ 22″ South, 63° 23′ 14″ West, is an island 6 km long and from 3 to 8 km wide, about 67 km2 in area, the southernmost of the major islands of the Palmenr Archipelago Two structures were erected on the shores of Dorian Bay; the Argentinean Refugio Bahia Dorian (WAP ARG-24) in 1957, and a larger building known as the Damoy Hut in 1973 and used for several years as a British summer air facility and transit station for scientific personnel. It was last occupied in 1993, where it served flights to and from a summer-use ice-strip for aircraft used before the sea-ice cleared near Rothera Base. The Damoy Hut (aka Station L) and its ice-strip were closed in 1995: the building is now listed as an Historic Site and Monument and is maintained and administered by the United Kingdom Antarctic Heritage Trust (UKAHT).
Both Argentinean Refugio Bahia Dorian (WAP ARG-24) and Damoy Hut (Station L)WAP GBR-31 have been activated by F5PFP signing respectively LU/FT5YJ and VP8DLM on March 2009. WAP does not have evidence of any other Ham radio activity before that date.
Find out more about Historic Site and Monument No. 84 by watching a short video on Damoy Hut. The site is Antarctica’s only protected historic transit facility and skyway, providing shelter and safe passage for scientists. (Courtesy of UKAHT)
Damoy is a well-preserved Hut containing scientific equipment and other artifacts was. It has been designated a Historic Site or Monument (HSM 84), following a proposal by the United Kingdom to the Antarcti Treaty Consultative Meeting.
For many, this was where they made their first Antarctic landing by ship. “As a first landfall in Antarctica it was hard to beat,” enthuses Steve Garrett, geophysicist. “Surely a candidate for the most beautiful place on Earth.”
The Hut became redundant in 1993 and by 2007 the building was due for demolition. However, it was saved and preserved as “an excellent example of Antarctic logistics and early air operations in Antarctica” helping us to understand the operational challenges of working in Antarctica. It takes its place as Historic Site and Monument No. 84 – one of only 33 buildings, and the sole transit facility, on the continent protected by the Antarctic Treaty.
In 2023, UKART restored the Hut back to its original bright orange. The decision followed paint sampling by our conservation team in 2018 and research by paint scientist and conservator, Phillipa McDonnell, in 2019. The restoration of the original colour scheme improved the legibility of the Hut’s historic function as a transit centre and provides a key hook for the improved interpretation of the site as a whole as well as protecting it from the elements.
The work was undertaken by a small field team of one field guide and two conservation carpenters experienced in conserving historic buildings. They spent nearly four weeks on-site from mid-January, working around challenging weather to strip back the existing paint by hand, prime, and repaint the building to its original bright orange. As with any UKAHT conservation work, the team adhered to strict methodologies to ensure no contamination of the surrounding environment.
There is still a big demand of contact with Polar Ships and even if some have been worked recently there are other hard to get!
It’s the case of RRS Sir David Attenborough a brand “New One” for many Hams WW!
According to the information in the webpage of Mike Gloistein GMØHCQ, it seems there are some possibility he can be active before too long.
Here is the spot : “ I am due back on board the RRS Sir David Attenborough in late March 2023, completing the end of the 22/23 Antarctic season with visits to Bird Island, South Georgia and Rothera, then bringing the ship north to the UK arriving 30th May.
Radio operation is still proving difficult and I did not manage to make any contacts on the passage south. Depending on workload I will try to get something working when next on board (March to June 2023).”
After having left anchor at the Falklands, actually the ship tracker shows the Icebreaker half way from VP8 (Falklands) and the Antarctic Peninsula, heading South.
While looking forward to put GMØHCQ/MM on the log, WAP wish Mike a safe sail.
The seventh German Antarctic North Victoria Land Expedition (GANOVEX VII) took place in the austral summer of 1992/93.
GANOVEX VII Multinational expedition was again funded by the Federal Agency for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR). Expedition leader was Dr. Roland, the ship “PolarQueen” was used, researchers from the various institutes BGR, AWI, DLR, Uni Frankfurt/M and others as well as from Holland, USA and New Zealand were involved, the Americans and a team from Australia took care of the helicopter service.
For the first time, BGR also carried out research in the GANOVEX Marie-Byrd-Land, Project GAMBLE in the Camp “La Gorce” at 76°50’ South, 153°41’ West; radio operator was Werner Thonhauser, OE8NOK Austrian radio operator and electronics technician during Ganovex I to VII, signing KC4/OE8NOK.
Marie Byrd Land hosted the Operation Deep Freeze base Byrd Station (originally at 80°S, 120°W, rebuilt at 80°S, 119°W), beginning in 1957, in the hinterland of Bakutis Coast. Byrd Station (WAP USA-19) was the only major base in the interior of West Antarctica for many years. In 1968, the first ice core to fully penetrate the Antarctic Ice Sheet was drilled here. The year-round station was abandoned in 1972, and after operating for years as a temporary summer encampment, Byrd Surface Camp (WAP USA-20),
Byrd Station (WAP USA-19), was reopened by the United States Antarctic Program (USAP) in 2009–2010 to support operations in northern West Antarctica. USA did set another large number of Camps at Marie Bird Land, (Bentley camps, J-9 Bern camp, Orset D Camp, Reedy Glacier Camp, Tam Camp, Taylor Camp and Twaites Camp, all listed on WAP-WADA Directory as USA-NEW.
Ham Radio activity from all the USA Stations & Camps on Marie Bird Land have been referenced on WAP-WADA Directory (See: WAP USA-Ø3, Ø4, 14, 18, 19, 2Ø, 3Ø, 35, 41 and 45).
On Ruppert Coast of Marie Byrd Land is the Russian station Russkaya (WAP RUS-12), which was occupied 1980–1990 and now closed East of the Siple Coast off the Ross Ice Shelf, Siple Dome Camp (WAP USA-18) was established as a summer science camp in 1996. Ice cores have been drilled here to retrieve the climate history of the last 100,000 years. This camp also served as a base for airborne geophysical surveys supported by the University of Texas Insistute for Geophisics (UTIG).
In 1998–1999, East Camp (WAP USA-32) was operated at the Ford Ranges (FRD) in western Marie Byrd Land, supporting a part of a United States Antarctic Program (USAP) airborne survey initiated by UCSB and supported by the UTIG flying out of Siple Dome (WAP USA-18).
In 2004–05, a large Camp Thwaites (THW), WAP USA-NEW, was established by the USAP 150 km (93 mi) north of NBY, in order to support a large airborne geophysical survey of eastern Marie Byrd Land by the UTIG.
In 2006, a major encampment WAIS Divide (WSD) WAP USA-24 (Pic on the Right) was established on the divide between the Ross Sea Embaymnent and the Amundsen Sea Embayment, in easternmost Marie Byrd Land, in order to drill a high resolution ice core. Drilling and coring ended in 2014
About Werner Thonhauser, OE8NOK (pic aside), he is now retired. He was ship electrical engineer and electronics technician, radio amateur, as reported on his professional career, his worldwide seafaring, his activities in the Antarctic, and the state of the art of communication technology at that time.
Training in Austria and Germany. Stations in Wolfsberg, Villach, Munich, Bremerhafen, Bremen. Education at the University of Applied Sciences Oldenburg, Department of Maritime Affairs.
Until 1980 he served as a radio officer on various ships, in 1979 for the first time with the destination Antarctica. 1981-1996 radio officer and electronics technician on board the research vessel POLARSTERN.
For 7-fold participation in GANOVEX Antarctic expeditions for the Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources released as radio officer. Assignment for the “Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar Research” with the task of dismantling the radio system of the “Georg von Neumayer Station” and setting up the communication systems of the new station “Georg Neumayer”.
1996 – 1998 Further training as a state-owned certified marine electrical engineer at the Fachschule für Seefahrt in Flensburg. 1998 – 2000 Service on container ships in the East Asia service. Thonhauser Rock (1020 m) is a rocky outcrop in Victoria land, Antarctica. It rises in the Bowers Mountains at the western end of Platypus Ridge. It was named by scientists of the German expedition GANOVEX I (1979–1980)after the Austrian Werner Thonhauser OE8NOK, radio operator on the MS Schepelsturm on this research trip.
GANOVEX VII-Project Gamble “Camp La Gorce” 76°50’ South, 153°41’ West , Marie Bird Land, Western Antarcticais now referenced as WAP MNB-19 TNX Olivier F6EPN &Heinz OE6HVD
Sobral Scientific Base ( Base Base Científica Sobral or Base Sobral) was a permanent, all year-round and now only partially active Argentine Antarctic base and scientific Research Station located on the Filchner Ice Shelf at 81°04′05″South, 40°36′01″West. It bears its name in honor of the late 19th and early 20th century Argentine explorer Ensign José María Sobral, who had joined Dr. Otto Nordenskjöld’s ill-fated Swedish Antarctic expedition in 1903. Josè Maria Sobral was the first Argentine known to winter in Antarctica.
The initial purpose of the Bse was to serve as a stopover on the route of the Argentine expedition to the South Pole, which was reached on December 10, 1965 in the so-called Operation 90.
Sobral Base (WAP ARG-Ø3) was founded on April 2, 1965 by a crew of 5 men from the Belgrano I Base (WAP ARG-Ø5) who sent a message to Buenos Aires the following day urging them to speed up the departure of the polar expedition by the first days of October, given the ice instability. Thus, on October 26, 1965, a group of 10 men left the Belgrano I Base and a few days later arrived at Sobral Base, reaching the South Pole on December 10, 1965.
Sobral Base (420 km south of Belgrano base and 780 km north of the South Pole), could accommodate a maximum of 7 people. Because the ice from the barrier caused cracks in the structures, the Base was closed on October 28, 1968 after 3 years of continuous service, and was quickly buried under the ice of the Filchner barrier. In November 1983, a reconnaissance patrol on Ski-Doo motorcycles with tow sleds, made up of six men, set out for the first time from the Belgrano II Base (WAP ARG-Ø6) with the mission of establishing a new route between Belgrano II and Sobral Base. They managed to locate the objective and reactivate it after 15 years, carrying out maintenance, communications, meteorological measurements and topographic reconnaissance tasks up to the Diamante mountain range, in places not visited by man. After 23 days of exploration, using nine days to go and four to return, they successfully returned to the Belgrano II leaving written testimonies in plastic tubes and marking the path with reeds and banners. After 14 years of this last reactivation, it was not possible to find it in 1997 when a patrol of 4 men from Belgrano II Base went in search of it. That patrol identified the place where the base should be located and established fuel depots for future operations in the region.
On December 13, 1999, a 7 man expedition that repeated the route to the South Pole arrived at the place indicated by the 1997 patrol, finding the remains of stakes and the Argentine flag, as well as fuel drums. The expedition searched for Sobral Base, finding it 11.5 km from its original position, finding the 3-meter-high antenna towers that protruded about 30 cm from the ice. The expedition members excavated the ice and managed to enter the base, staying there for two days.
On 10 October 2000 a six-men research expedition established a scientific camp at Sobral’s emplacement and measured local ozone levels with a spectrophotometer. The temporary occupation was conducted by personnel belonging to Belgrano II and a technician from the National Antarctic Directorate; since then, a new expedition is sent every year between September and December, where the lowest annual average concentration of ozone in Antarctica is recorded.
In order to reach the remote base this team must travel for distances up to 400 km (250 mi) over very rugged ice terrain filled with numerous cracks, which pose an often unpredictable threat. Snowcat heavy vehicles are used to cover half of the route; light vehicles like the Yamaha VK-540 II Ski-Doo are preferred for the rest. The party carries all the necessary equipment for a three-months stay, such as tents, fuel, supplies, survival kits, communication hardware and scientific instruments.
Sobral BaseWAP ARG-Ø3, remains one of the most rare sites with very few Hamradio operations. 3 are the callsigns used from Base Sobral: LU1ZZ LU2ZZ and LU3ZRM.
. TNX Olivier F6EPN (Spratley Woody) for the help in finding old QSL
Viktor Perov piloted aircraft serving the Polar Stations SP-2, SP-3, SP-4 and SP-5. While working in the Arctic, Perov had to rescue people in distress more than once. In 1956, he participated in the rescue of the Norwegian-Swedish-Soviet expedition to Svalbard.
In 1957-1959, Perov worked as part of a Soviet Expedition to Antarctica. December 11, 1958 in the Crystal Mountains (Antarctica, coordinates: 72°00′ South, 29°00′ West. d.HGAO), 250 km from the Belgian Antarctic Station“King Baudouin” (WAP BEL-Ø1), a plane crashed with a Belgian expedition on board. Among the members of the expedition was Prince Antoine de Ligne (fr.) Rus.. The Captain of the Belgians was Gaston de Gerlache. Soviet polar explorers from Mirny Station (WAP RUS-Ø7) offered assistance in their rescue, and the Australian Mawson Sation(WAP AUS-Ø4) supported the flights. Viktor Perov was appointed commander of the aircraft (Li-2 with the tail number H-495) sent to search for them. The search was conducted in the most difficult weather conditions, in the absence of accurate maps and problems in radio communication. The situation was complicated by the unexplored terrain, which the Belgians flew out to map. After several days of searching, on December 16, the Belgian polar explorers were found and rescued. For this feat, Viktor Perov was awarded the Order of Leopold II in 1959, and the Order of the Crown in 2001.
Later, Viktor Perov was chairman of the Polar Commission of the Moscow Center of the Russian Geographical Society and co-chairman of the Soviet-Belgian Friendship Society. He wrote a book of memoirs “Polar Routes”.
Nordenskjöld’s Hut aka Nordenskjöld House (64°21’49” South, 56°59’ 30” West) is a log hut built in February 1902 by the main body of the Swedish South Pole Expedition led by Otto Nordenskjold, who used the Snow Hill island (aka Cerro Nevado island) on the east coast of the Antarctic Peninsula as a base to explore the surrounding areas between 1901 and 1903. Currently, the Argentine Republic administers it as the Sweden refuge.
Since July 26, 1965 Refugio Suecia is a National Historic Monument of Argentina, by decree No. 6058/1965 and as part of the Province of Tierra del Fuego , Antarctica and South Atlantic Islands. It is also protected by the Antarctic Treaty, which designated it a 38th Historic Site and Monument, through ATCM VII-9 designation of 1972 and following a joint proposal between Argentina and the UK to the Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting
The Argentine Navy took possession of the Refuge on January 8, 1954, renaming it Refugio Suecia and proceeded to its restoration. On that day the frigate Captain Luis T. De Villalobos, commander of the transport ARA Bahia Aguirre, took possession of the Refuge facilities on behalf of the Government of the Argentine Republic and recorded the new name. On the same day in its vicinity the Betbeder Naval Shelter was built. The Hut was used as a base for reconnaissance research in the summers of 1953-1954 and 1954-1955. In the early 1960s it had a warehouse with provisions for three people for three months.
The Refuge has been restored by the Argentine Antarctic Institute. It is enabled as a Museum and contains original objects of the expedition. Its conservation is carried out by Argentina and Sweden.
History On February 12, 1902, the Swedish Antarctic Expedition led by Otto Nordenskjöld arrived on Cerro Nevado Island aboard the sailboat Antarctic provided with an auxiliary steam engine. The Captain of the ship was Carl Anton Larsen.
The leader of the expedition had to spend the winter on the island along with meteorologist Gösta Bodman, sailor Gustav Akerlund, all of them of Swedish nationality, and Argentine Josè Maria Sobral, ensign. They would carry out meteorological, magnetic, astronomical and hydrographic work, as well as expeditions on the sea ice to the neighboring islands and to the nearby area of the Antarctic Peninsula, a region later known as the Nordenskjold Coast, and which extends to the southwest of the island.
On the northeast coast of the island a prefabricated wooden hut was mounted, covered externally with cardboard sheets ember bounded.
A new deep-Field Camp has been established in the Bunger Hills, near the Denman Glacier in East Antarctica, for scientists to begin studying climate change impacts in the region.
The Camp was constructed over 55 days by a small team of Australian trade and field personnel, who were flown to the site 450 kilometres west of Casey Research Station (WAP AUS-Ø2), in December 2022.
The Team assembled four prefabbricated Huts and 11wooden platforms on a rocky outcrop and the Research site is now ready for major Antarctic Science Campaign. The camp will house up to 40 scientists and support personnel working on and around the glacier next season.
Bunger Hills, also known as Bunger Lakes or Bunger Oasis, is a coastal range on the Knox Coast in Wilkes Land, Antarctica, consisting of a group of moderately low, ounded coastal hills, overlain by morainic drift and notably ice free throughout the year, lying south of the Highjump Archipelago.
Bunger Hills-Deman Glacier Camp at 66°17’ South, 100°47’ East will enter on WAP-WADA Directory as WAP AUS-NEW
Valery Sushkov RW3GW is an Old Timer DXpeditionner and actual President of the Russian Robinson Club (RRC).
Valery is a researcher, postal historian, traveler and marketer, document-list, chief postmaster of the International Society of Philatourism, author of the new concept of “philatourism” in the history of world tourism practice, curator of the Museum of World Postal Communications. Project Manager & Postal Adventure. Visited more than 50 countries of the world, participant and organizer of more than 100 different expeditions on 6 continents, conqueror of the South Pole and Mount Kilimanjaro the highest peak of Africa. Mmember of the Russian Geographical Society, Society for the Study of the Amur Territory, member of the Union of Journalists of Russia, laureate of the National Prizes of the Russian Geographical Society “Crystal Compass”
Valery is the author, general producer and project manager of the Great Russian Travelers. Under the Prism of Philaturism
The great Russian travelers were pioneers and put new lands and seas on the map of the world, made discoveries that enriched world science, pushed the development of maritime trade, and also raised the prestige of their country and contributed to the development of new territories.
During the last Antarctic Summer Campaign, a staff from the Argentine Joint Antarctic Command set a shelter for scientific personnel on Vega Island and called it Refugio Teniente Primero Aroldo Serrano. This is a brand new entry on WAP-WADA Antarctic Directory and referenced as ARG-NEW. (Pic aside show the building operation of the Refuge)
Vega Island, 57°50’South, 57°33’ West is a small island to the northwest of James Ross Island, on the Antarctic Peninsula. It is separated from James Ross Island by Herrbert Sound and from Trinity Peninsula by Prince Gustav Channel. The island was named by Otto Nordenskjold, leader of the Swedish Antarctic Expedition (1901–04) in honour of the ship making the first voyage through the Northeast Passage, 1878-79.
Vega island, 17 mi long and 6 mi wide, is the northernmost of the James Ross Island group and lies in the Western part of Erebus and Terror Gulf. Surveyed by SwAE in October 1903, when its insularity was established, and named Vega after the Swedish ship Vega used by Baron A. E. Nordenskiöld (uncle of the Leader of SwAE) in making the first voyage through the Northeast Passage,
The Museum was built to raise funds for the ongoing conservation of the historic buildings at Cape Denison which were used as the main base for the 1911-14 Australasian Antarctic Expedition (AAE)
The Replica Museum is a boutique, world class museum providing visitors with the opportunity to learn and understand the history and achievements of the men of the 1911-14 Australasian Antarctic Expedition led by Douglas Mawson.
Standing on the Hobart waterfront just 200 metres from where Mawson’s expedition departed from in 1911, the Replica also serves as an educational facility and promotes the legacy of the AAE.
The museum promotes awareness of Australia’s involvement in the Antarctic and highlights Hobart as the gateway to the Antarctic continent for the Asia Pacific region.
Situated on land generously provided by the Hobart City Council (HCC), the Replica Museum was constructed off-site in an area provided by the Tasmanian Ports Authority. Construction was done in three sections to allow transportation to the current site where it was bolted together for the final fit-out.
After years of securing funding and the support of the HCC in providing a site, work on the Replica began with the assistance of a special grant of $350,000 from the Federal Government in 2011 and the generosity of many Tasmanian businesses and individuals who donated time, goods and goodwill.
Construction took just four months and it was officially opened on December 2, 2013 on the 102nd anniversary of Mawson’s departure from Hobart as leader of the AAE.
Antarctic Ambassadors is a global community of people who love and respect the region, educate others by sharing their Antarctic experiences, advocate for Antarctica when opportunities arise and protect Antarctica by making positive changes at home.
Volker Strecke DL8JDX has been awarded as Antarctic Ambassador of the IAATO (International Association of Antarctic Tour Operators).
After a long absence from Antarctica during a “usual” job in IT and Communication for 29 years Volker Strecke DL8JDX, three times wintering in Antarctica, 1988-1989 Georg Forster Station, 1990-1992 Georg Forster Station, 1992-1994 Neumayer II Station, as communication electronician and radio operator, had the luck and honour to go back again in 2023 as a lecturer and expedition guide, creating Antarctic Ambassadors himself with lectures and carefully guided shore excursions.
Volker wrote:“Since returning I have delivered several presentations using my experience in Antarctica and sharing the history of the Antarctic Treaty. Antarctic Ambassadorship is important. With ambassadorship it is possible to make visible the importance of the further protection of Antarctica. We see how quickly the climatic changes affect the polar regions. Therefore, everything must be done to at least slow down this process and to give people information on how everyone can contribute directly or indirectly to preserve the sensitive nature of Antarctica for future generations. My presentations on many different occasions and also my work as a lecturer and expedition guide on board expedition ships in Antarctica are a contribution to this.”
Project Blizzard aimed to increase public awareness of Australia’s involvement in Antarctica and, in doing so, conserve Mawson’s Huts. In particular, viewed the scientific work, including meteorological, biological, geological and magnetic research of the AAE, as significant. The organization immediately began to look for financial support from the community, hoping to raise capital for a privately-funded Antarctic expedition. The campaign used the slogan ‘Buy a board for Mawson’s Hut’.
The Project Blizzard team carried out two expeditions to the site, the first in 1984/85 and the second in 1985/86. In 1984/85 their work largely involved recording of the site and structures by surveyors, architects, archaeologists and a materials conservator. The red fibreglass Apple Hut was constructed during this visit, adjacent to the Granholm Hut. In 1985/86, they focused on stabilising the internal platform of the Main Hut, which had partly collapsed under the load of snow ingress, using metal and timber props. This work involved an associated archaeological excavation program in areas disturbed for the works.
The Project Blizzard efforts had two positive effects. They clearly stimulated increased efforts in conservation planning for the site and also led to further co-operative efforts between the public and private sector to conserve the Mawson’s Huts.
In 1986 ANARE returned to Cape Denison. The Sorensen Hut was constructed during this expedition, sited in a valley 500 m to the east of the Main Hut. The structure was composed of insulated metal panels.
Meanwhile, conservation planning for the site had begun. The Antarctic Historic Sites and Monuments Advisory Committee was established in 1986. In 1993 Michael Pearson prepared a Conservation Plan at the request of the Mawson’s Huts Conservation Committee and the AAD.
7th March 1948-7th March 2023.
Established on March 7, 1948 Macca celebrates the 75th anniversary of its foundation.
In the early hours of the morning of 7th March 1948, HMALST 3501 (later renamed HMAS Labuan) anchors at Buckles Bay, Macquarie Island54° 29′ 56″ South, 158° 56′ 17″ East.
The ANARE team had arrived to establish a base that was to be permanently occupied for the next 75 years. The ANARE Club pays tribute to the 1306 men and women expeditioners who have wintered there during these 75 years.
The Voyage Leader of the 1948 Expedition, and Captain of the Ship, was Lieutenant Commander George Dixon
Macquarie Island is located half way between Tasmania and Antarctica and a Station was established on the “green sponge” in 1948. The Island was used as a half way point to establish the first radio link between Australia and Antarctica during Sir Douglas Mawson’s 1911 expedition.
The Macquarie Island Station (WAP AUS-Ø8) , commonly called Macca, is a permanent Australian Subantarctic Research Base, managed by the Australian Antarctic Division (AAD). The station lies at the base of Wireless Hill, between two bays on the isthmus at the northern end of the island.
Renovation work continues on the infrastructure of the Petrel Joint Antarctic Base (WAP ARG-17) within the framework of its reopening as a permanent Station, during the 2022/23Summer Antarctic Campaign.
The main advances in the building recovery, are focused on the reconditioning of the rooms and the extension of the sewage network of the main house. While the total restoration of the hangar, includes the reinforcement of the electrical network.
The complete repair of the road to the Main Power Plant, the demolition of the old power plant and the bases of disused communication towers, are part of this second phase of development together with the renovation of the landing strips and the disposal of waste. antarctics
For the construction of the maritime pier, personnel from the Naval Hydrography Service are carrying out bathymetry studies on Dundee Island.
Also, Petrel Base has already inaugurated its new small Chapel named “Santo Cura Brochero”.
Jose Gabriel del Rosario Brochero (16 March 1840 – 26 January 1914) was a Catholic priest who suffered leprosy throughout his life. He is known for his extensive work with the poor and the sick.. He became affectionately known as “the Gaucho priest” and the “cowboy priest”.
He was beatified on 14 September 2013 after a healing was recognized as a miracle attributed to him. Cardinal Angelo Amato, on the behalf of Pope Francis, presided over the beatification. Another miracle under investigation was approved in 2016 and a date for canonization was approved in a gathering of cardinals on 15 March 2016. Jose Gabriel del Rosario Brochero he was canonized as a saint on 16 October 2016. More info at:Argentina reactivates Petrel base in Antarctica | Polarjournal
Dr. Carlos Court Lucero, Retired Radiologist, Medical Lieutenant of the Argentine Navy Reserve
Member of the 4th crew at the Corbeta Uruguay Scientific Station on Morrell-Thule Island, South Sandwich Islands did help to find a recent picture of the new Chapel, which will be pubblished on the Church in Antarcticasection here at WAP website. TNX Dr. Carlos