Six months of darkness are one of the reasons powerful telescopes are located at the South Pole. (Amindsen-Scott US South Pole Station, WAP USA-21 & WAP USA-36).
The photo by Danny Hampton (here aside), shows the South Pole Telescope, operated by the University of Chicago, as they study the origins of the universe.
Thanks and credit to: The Antarctic Support Contract
The Antarctic Support Contract team provides station operations, logistics, information technology, construction, maintenance and more on Antarctica and at support facilities worldwide.
Supporting scientific research on the highest, driest, coldest, windiest and emptiest place on Earth requires exceptional logistics and planning expertise. Leidos is the prime contractor for the National Science Foundation’s United States Antarctic Program (USAP).
One continent has not yet confirmed a case of the novel coronavirus. It’s a place of barren ice, where the all-consuming cold and darkness of winter is fast approaching.
Over the past few months, some 4,000 people from around the world have watched from Antarctica as the coronavirus pandemic, swept around the globe, reaching all but its southernmost reaches. “You’d better stay there, you’re safer there,” Alberto Della Rovere, leader of the 35th Italian expedition to Antarctica, said his colleagues at home told him via WhatsApp.
For now, they appear to be right. Even in normal times, only a limited number of people are allowed in and out of Antarctica, with medical workers screening for signs of influenza and other illnesses before arrival.
“Right now, this, Antarctica, is the safest place in the world,” Della Rovere said. “There are no outside contacts and we’re far away from any settlement.”
Someone call it “Shackleton Memorial”, others “Frank Wild Memorial” while HSM (Historical Sites and Monuments) with its official HSM-53 call this place “Endurance Memorial site”.
Beyond all names that are attributed to it, Point Wild on Elephant Island, hosts the bust of Luis Antonio Pardo Villalòn, the Chilean Navy Officer who, in August 30th 1916, commanded the steam Tug Yelcho to rescue the 22 stranded crewmen of Sir Ernast Shackleton’s expedition who survived the wreck of the ship Endurance living for four and one half months in this island.
As a matter of fact, most cruises stopping at Point Wild , an epic place where part of the Shackleton’s expedition members camped waiting for a rescue. It’s not easy to set foot at Elephant Island where in spite of beautiful landscape, the very rugged coastline and frequent extreme weather makes landings difficult.
As second-in-command of the Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition, Frank Wild was left in charge of twenty-one men on desolate Elephant Island as Shackleton and a crew of five, made their epic rescue mission to South Georgia aboard a lifeboat. From 24 April to 30 August 1916 Wild and his crew waited on Elephant Island, surviving on a diet of seal, penguin and seaweed untill they were finally rescued by Shackleton aboard the Chilean ship Yelcho.
Point Wild (61°03′ South 54°50′ West) is though named after Frank Wild with a monument dedicated to the Chilean captain Luis Pardo who rescued him and his men.
The Bust of Captain Luis Alberto Pardo, monolith and plaques have been placed on Elephant Island and their replicas on the Chilean bases Capitan Arturo Prat (62°30’South, 59°49’West) WAP CHL-Ø1 and President Eduardo Frei (62°12’South, 62°12′ West) WAP CHL-Ø5. Bronze busts of the pilot Luis Pardo Villalon were placed on the three above-mentioned monoliths during the XXIVth Chilean Antarctic Scientific Expedition in 1987–88
The plaque displays the following words: “Here on August 30th, 1916, the Chilean Navy cutter Yelcho commanded by Pilot Luis Pardo Villalón rescued the 22 men from the Shackleton Expedition who survived the wreck of the Endurance living for four and one half months in this Island”.
On the April 2020 issue, the German CQ-DL Magazine dedicates several pages to report the QO-100 activity with particular regards to the contact made from Neumayer III Station (WAP DEU-Ø8) and the students at school.
Reaching DPØGVN via QO-100 is still possible … why not trying?
Thanks our good friend Volker, DL8JDX (ex:Y88POL, DP0GVN), amicably appointed as WAP Ambassador, for relaying the information.
In addition, Volker DL8JDX informs the Chasers that: Whoever still wants a QSL for Y88POL or DPØGVN from the period 1988 to 1994 , he still have all logs.
Picture aside, shows the roof of the Neumayer III Station with AMSAT-DL antenna in the background: Felix, DL5XL; Torsten, DL1TOG, and Roman, HB9HCF, who will remain in Antarctica until February 2021.
These are the Hams who did the installation and test… of course, a great job!
Over the summer of 2016–2017, the Antarctic Heritage Trust’s team on the Ice spent more than 5700 hours carefully restoring Hillary’ Hut (TAE Hut) and conserving more than 500 artefacts. A million dollar project to save Sir Ed’s hut in Antarctica is now largely complete
For the past three months, the Antarctic Heritage Trust has had a team of 12 carpenters and conservation specialists on the ice saving the hut and conserving the hundreds of artefacts within it.
Hillary’s Hut (aka known as “A” Hut ) of Scott Base, is the only existing Commonwealth Trans-Antarctic Expedition (1956–1957) building in Antarctica. It’s where the first group of 18 members of the TAE (Trans-Antarctic Expedition) led by Sir Edmund Hillary and the five New Zealand scientists led by Trevor Hatherton, , did winter over at Scott Base contributing to the IGY. During that epic, Hillary slept in his office in “A” Hut, while the others shared the dormitory accommodation in ‘C’ and ‘D’ huts.
The “A” Hut has been designated a Historic Site or Monument (HSM 75), following a proposal by New Zealand to the Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting.
Snow has taken on a sinister-looking blood red colour at a UkrainianVernadsky Research Base (WAP UKR-Ø1) due to a type of algae which contributes to climate change.
For several weeks, scientists working at Vernadsky in Antarctica have been surrounded by what they call “raspberry snow”. Images released by Ukraine’s Ministry of Education and Science on Monday showed the phenomenon, which is caused by microscope snow algae when weather conditions are favorable during Antarctica’s summer months.
The ministry explained that the algae is able to survive the extreme cold temperatures during the Antarctic winter and begins to sprout when warmer temperatures arrive in the summer (between October and February). The algae’s cells have a red carotene layer which protects it from ultraviolet radiation and produces red spots in the snow like “raspberry jam”, the ministry said.
At the northern tip of Antarctica, 800 miles from the nearest pub, lies the world’s most southerly Post Office. Port Lockroy a former British outpost and now an Antarctic research station (WAP GBR-Ø1),, has no running water and lies on an isolated island about the size of a primary school playing field.
A team of four adventurers live there for a few months each year tasked with running the Post Office and keeping an eye on the 2,000 gentoo penguins that inhabit the island.
With workers bracing frigid -10C temperatures and sometimes going days without a wash, you might ask who’d be mad enough to take a job there.
Step in Laura MacNeil: A librarian based in Edinburgh who describes her stint at Lockroy as a “once in a lifetime trip”.
Running the base’s gift shop between November 2016 and March 2017, Laura, 40, admits she had a few tough moments at the site on Antarctica’s Goudier Island. Port Lockroy is run and maintained by the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust (UKAHT), a charity that conserves historic buildings and artefacts in Antarctica.
Read more at: https://www.thesun.co.uk/tech/11032252/antarctica-port-lockroy-research-station-gift-shop-job-apply/
Just today I’ve received a post card (see pics) stampded at Port Lockroy. It was a great surprise , a gift from my good friend Eddy De Busschere a keen Polar Philatelic collector at BPES (Belgian Polar expedition Society). TNX Eddy!
Magallanes Region, officially the Magallanes and Chilean Antarctica Region is one of Chile’s ‘s 16 first order administrative division. It comprises four provincies: Ultima Esperanza, Magallanes, Tierra del Fuego, and Antarctica Chilena.
Magallanes’s geographical features include Torres del Paine, Cape Horn, Tierra del Fuego island, and the Strait of Magellan. It also includes the Antarctic territories claimed by Chile
XR8RRC-Wellington Island (49°22’15” South, 74°55’35” West) belongs to Ultima Esperanza Province. In its Southern point ( 49° 54’ 01” South, 74° 24’ 03” West), Wellington isaland, hosts the automatic Punta Cameron Lighthouse.
Villa Puerto Eden, Wellington Island has a permanent presence of the Chilean Navy that has a Port Captaincy, installed in the mid-seventies in the same facilities that use to house the Air Force radio station, which is located in front of Puerto Edén village, in the sector of Yetarkte Bay
XR8RRC/p – WAP CHL-13
Weather and transport permitting, RRC Team plans to land on Riesco Island (WAP CHL-13), and doing activity up to 48 hours from 19 to 21 march as XR8RRC/P.
Stay tuned… it’s a good one for WAP Awards. In the southwestern portion of Riesco island, Córdova Peninsula marks the eastern limit of the Strait of Magellan and its enter in the Sub-Peri Antarctic circle (Check WAP-WADA Directory)
Antarctica’s bicentenary year, a right time to join UKAHT, a site that keeps the Antarctic enthusiast up to date with lots of exciting work in Antarctica and beyond.
By joining UKAHT , you will receive a regular e-bulletins updating you on all our exciting projects and sharing opportunities, events and fundraising news too. Why not become a “Friend of Antarctica” by joining UKAHT as a member?
UKAHT aim is to connect like-minded people who share an interest in this remarkable continent, together exploring the wonder of Antarctica and reliving its many inspirational stories to promote a greater understanding of this extraordinary place and the role we all have in protecting it.
Help protect, inspire and champion the future of Antarctica
Signy island hosts a lighthouse listed on the Amateur Radio Lighthouse Society (ARLHS) this lighthouse seems to be not too far away the Signy Research Station site (WAP GBR-Ø9).
It is clearly documented that Signy island LH is very near the Base at 60° 42′ South, 43° 35′ West Gridsquare GC89. Signy Island LH is also referenced as ARLHS SOI-001, Admiralty Nr.G1375, NGA 110-20362.
But now, a problem comes up!
We have been trying to get a picture of this LH but in vain … loks like the Signy LH does not exist anymore!
In a recent message, about this matter, sent to Gabry IK1NEG, our great friend Mike Gloistein GMØHCQ wrote:
I am not aware of there ever being a lighthouse at Signy. I have written to the Station Leader at Signy and he has confirmed my thoughts, in that when the base was manned full time there was a scaffold frame with a lamp at the top but not really classed as a lighthouse. The Station Leader may have a picture of it, but it was taken down about four or five years ago.
If I do get a photo I will forward it on to you.
So, a kind of Lighthouse did exist at Signy island, as it has been referenced by several officials, but apparently, no one has been able to find out a close up picture of it.
Following the suggestion of Pedro Sarli, LU1JHF, to add a proper reference on WAP-WADA-LH Directory, we did it anyway.
WAP-LH-GBR-ØØ2 is the reference issued to it. New WAP reference will appear on WAP LH Directory on next up date (June 2020)
Turkish scientists continue their scientific research on Horseshoe Island in Antarctica. After the construction of Turkey’s first temporary science Base on the island (67°49’40” South, 67°12’08” West), the Team welcomed a group of guests from Chile, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic and Ukraine for the first time. The six guest scientists did work together with the 24-member of the Turkish research Team joins 15 scientific projects in the Earth, life, and marine sciences.
In addition, Turkey has opened GNSS station on Dismal Island, at 73 kilometres (45 miles) from Horseshoe Island in Antarctica, to track changes in the location of icebergs and transmit photos of Antarctica’s surface, as well as process data from GPS, GLONASS and Galileo.
“The GNSS satellite navigation base station was set up within the framework of the fourth Turkish scientific expedition to Antarctica” said Turkish Industry and Technology Minister Mustafa Varank, as quoted by the national Anadolu news agency. “A group of specialists from the Turkish General Directorate of Mapping has built Turkey’s first GNSS base station abroad.”
Dismal Island (68°05′37″ South, 68°51′06″ West) is an island, 1.9 kilometres (1 nmi) long and 60 metres (200 ft) high, which is mainly ice covered and is the largest of the Faure Islands, an archipelago lying in Marguerite Bay off the west coast of Graham Land.
Prof. Carla Caruso and Dr. Laura Bertini (pic aside) of the Department of Ecological and Biological Sciences of the University of Tuscia in Viterbo (Italy) will be back home next march 15th after a month-long mission in Antarctica.
The expedition takes place as part of a PNRA (National Antarctic Research Program) project funded by the Ministry of University and Research (MIUR).
The current project aims to study the role of microorganisms in adapting plants to climate change, with a particular focus on plant-fungus-virus interaction. Furthermore, since microorganisms from extreme ecosystems have evolved unique biochemical and physiological strategies, they can
represent a rich source of new bio-molecules, with potential applications in the pharmaceutical, agricultural and industrial fields.
The project also involves the Italian Universities of Padova and Trento, and that of Temuco, Chile. Researchers from the University of Tuscia have now taken over the Polish Base Henrik Arctowski WAP POL-Ø1 (pic on the right), at King George Island (South Shetland), and avail themselves of the collaboration of the Chilean National Antarctic Institute (INACH) for transfers and logistical support.
Oleg, UA6GG (DX Trophy Awards Group) informs that “Antarctica 2020 Trophy” is now ready and available to OM & SWL showing evidence of two-way communications (SWL report) with station operating in Antarctica.
“ANTARCTICA 2020 TROPHY”
for QSO’s / SWL’s stations in Antarctica for any period of time.
To obtain a trophy, you must dial at least 15 different stations / bases including at least 5 different nations (for example: Russia, China, Argentina, Chile, USA ..).
The trophy is carried out individually – Antarctic callsigns indicated in the application will be displayed on the trophy, but for each Station/ Base declared there will be only one callsign (with 2 or more callsigns from one base, only one callsign is selected at your discretion).
Modes: CW, SSB, DIGI, MIX (CW / SSB), ALL (CW / SSB / DIGI)
Free application: CALL – DATE- BAND- MODE-QTH.
Confirmation: QSL or LOTW / Сlublog scans.
The upper part of the Tropy is made of 2.5D glass seal, the base is made of wood MDF. Size 280 x 280 mm. The cost of a plaque is 64$ or 57 Euros. (including sending by registered parcel). Payment via PAYPAL.
In the year of the 200th Anniversary of Antarctic Discovery, we must highlight an important person and interpreter of the recent history of polar explorations.
«Antarctica can serve as a model for all humanity today. It’s a Continent without national borders. It is governed by the Antarctic Treaty, which has been in existence for 60 years. This is a superb document, which gives Antarctica to the scientists, not to the military» Viktor Boyarsky
Viktor Boyarsky is a prominent Russian traveller, Honored Polar Explorer of Russia, Chairman of the Polar Commission of the Russian Geographical Society (RGS), member of the National Geographic Society of the United States, full member of the National Tourism Academy and the International Academy of Refrigeration, Candidate of Science in Physics and Mathematics and member of the Union of In 1987, Boyarsky was sent as a Soviet representative to the International Trans-Antarctic Expedition, timed to the 30th anniversary of the Antarctic Treaty, which was signed by 12 states, including the USSR, and determined the status of the Antarctic as a continent of peace and cooperation.
In September 2002, the Russian President awarded Boyarsky with a medal of the Order “For Services to the Fatherland,” 2nd Class. In 2008, he received the Order of Boris Vilkitsky and the badge “Honored Hydrometeorology Professional” for his contribution to the development of polar science.