Professor Arif Herekar the first ever  Pakistani to camp on the Antarctic Continent

Professor Arif Herekar,  Professor of Neurology together with excelling in his professional duties is a passionate traveller and globe trotter. He happens to be one of the few Pakistanis to step on to the Antarctic soil, probably the only Pakistani certified as an Antarctic naval seal camping on the Antarctic continent has made this beautiful country Pakistan proud by hoisting the national flag on the Antarctic soil.

These achievements were made during his coveted expedition with a group of Polar explorers between the end of year 2015 and first week of year 2016.

.

April 25th World Penguin Day

While on April 25th the world  celebrates the penguins, it’s also a time to think about saving them. Many penguin colonies have been lost to climate change and it’s estimated that half the population of emperor penguins will vanish by the end of this century.

Penguins are some of the most adorable, lovable and impressive creatures in the animal kingdom, so why not dedicate a day to these flightless birds?

.

World Penguin Day is a celebratory and educative initiative that encourages people to learn more about penguins and their environment, how important they are to our ecosystems and the threats they face. Interested in learning more about this day?

Read more at:  It’s World Penguin Day! » Explorersweb

HamSphere, a virtual way to be on air … also from Antarctica!

WAP has recently got a  mail from Frank, FØDUW :

Hello, congratulation for your WAP website. I am on HamSphere 4.0 and we have Antarctica operators but this is virtual via internet. If you know an operator in antarctica who like to be on HamSphere 4.0 please give him the information.

73 de Frank FØDUW who was FT3/FØDUW on French Antarctica

The QSLs attached to the mail (see pictures  aside) did capture my attention, there were Antarctic QSLs for calls we never heard on the air!

So, I did ask Frank FØDUW more information about, and here is the answer:

Only amateur radio operator with a call sign can work a remote on HamSphere 4.

The TX and antenna are for exemple, located in Antarctica but the operator is, for exemple, in Paris. The propagation in Antarctica will be the same of real Amateur Radio. We have dirctional antenna and 100 watts.

Operators who are on HS like 14HS10 they can also work from Antarctica with  RM1 call sign. (See the picture). So this is virtual but realy like amateur radio. Just no need to travel on the frozen Continent!

73, Frank FØDUW

We personally didn’t know that,  and now we understood that HamSphere is a subscription-based internet service which simulates Amteur Radio communication over the Internet as designed by Kelly Lindman, 5B4AIT.

The simulator allows licensed radio amateurs and unlicensed enthusiasts to communicate with one another using a simulated ionosphere.

The system allows realistic worldwide connections between amateur radio operators as well as radio enthusiasts. In general it is similar to otherVoIP applications (such as Skype), but with the unique addition of characteristics such as channel selection by tuning, modulation, noise effects and shortwave propagation simulation.

We did also ask Mario Fontanella IK4HAQ (ex IK3HAQ) about a strange QSL, forwarded us by Frank FDUW.  Mario, kindly reply  with his comment:

I used to live in Venice, when I was IK3HAQ.  Now I live in Bologna and, there is no way to  install antennas from this QTH, I have been looking for solutions to keep my passion for radio communications active and I found HamSphere,  a web platform that simulates the HF propagation conditions according to the VOACAP indications, allowing radio amateurs and “radio enthusiasts” to get practice to listening to and virtually,  connecting other stations present, both physically and /or remotely, in various locations around the world.

These activities are not connected to the real Ham radio activity. Hamsphere is a system that uses Internet to connect to radio equipment through the ionosphere. It’s only a simulation, even if very well done.

Among the various active virtual stations,  there are some that operate remotely from the (simulated) positions of the Antarctic Bases and/or  the Antarctic islands.

It is, -I repeat-  only a simulation, not a real communications, therefore they are not valid for purposes such as Awards or recognition from the radio world, but only among the participants of the Hamsphere platform.

73’s Mario Fontanella IK4HAQ (ex IK3HAQ)

To our understanding and convinction, Ham Radio should not be a trick or a virtual game; a real DX contact, a real QSO especially with Antarctica must be struggled and perhaps suffered with a real radio, with a real antenna and not only with a PC or the desire to feel himself a virtual OM!

A motto says: The world is beautiful because it is varied!  OK…  varied, not spoiled!

India’s 35-year-old research station Maitri needs urgent upgrades

India has two operational research stations at the South Pole: Maitri (WAP IND-Ø3) and Bharati (WAP IND-Ø4).

Dakshin Gangotri (WAP IND-Ø1), the first station built before 1985, is now operating as a base transit camp mainly for supplying goods.

One of India’s research stations in Antarctica, Maitri, which has been operational for over 35 years, needs urgent upgradation, work towards which is being done by the National Centre for Polar and Ocean Research (NCPOR), Mirza Javed Beg, the centre’s Director said.

Every year, NCPOR-coordinated voyages with Indian scientists, meteorologists and researchers are sent to Antarctica. They spend anywhere between a month and a year across seasons gathering in-situ samples, maintaining equipment and taking up other scientific activities.

“There is an urgent need for the revamping of the Maitri station, which is more than 35 years old. The NCPOR is focusing on the same” Beg told The Indian Express via email, on the occasion of Earth Day which is observed on April 22.

Built during 1988-1989 to operate for a period of ten years, Maitri is an important Station that allows scientists to collect geological, meteorological and geophysical data. This data is useful in understanding and drawing timely inferences about climate change and other scientific areas. Thus, continuing its operations holds key.

According to the proposed plan by the Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES), the process of identifying a more favourbale and an environment-friendly site is underway. Once the revamping of the station is complete, it will be a green facility capable of housing more scientists, both during summer and winter. With harsh weather and greater research possibilities needing international collaborations, Beg said that building the third research station was not viable.

Read more at: India’s 35-year-old research station in Antarctica needs urgent upgrades, says polar centre’s director | Cities News,The Indian Express

Antartida Argentina Plaque  by DX Trophy, issued to DL8JDX

Volker Strecke DL8JDX has just received the Antartida Argentina Plaque and the RG6ØANT special QSL Card on the occasion of the 60th Anniversary of the Antarctic Treaty entering into force.
Volker (Ex-Callsigns: DM3LTG, Y43UG, Y24LN, Y88POL, DPØGF, DPØGVN) is happy to share this great achievement with the Antarctic hunters!

TNX to DL8JDX  & Oleg UA6GG @ DX Trophy!

 

Argentine Antarctica is a part of Antarctica claimed by Argentina  as part of its national territory. This claim overlaps with British and Chilean claims in Antarctica.

Argentine Antarctica is a department of the Province of Tierra del Fuego, Antarctica and South Atlantic Islands.

The Argentine exploration to the continent started early in the 20th Century. José María Sobral was the first Argentine to set foot on Antarctica in 1901. He spent  two seasons with the Swedish Antarctic Expedition of Doctor Otto Nordenskiöld.

In 1904, the Orcadas Base was fully working. Years later other bases were made. The first Argentine expedition to reach the South Pole was the 1965 Operación 90.

.

Argentine actions in Antarctica are coordinated by the Instituto Antartico Argentino

LU1ZD Base General San Martin (WAP ARG-Ø8) “On Air”

Carlos Almirón (LU7DSY) informs that Claudio Daniel Karner LU3DCK, actually on board of I/B Almirante Irizar will plan to operate from Friday 15 april,   to monday 18 april 2022,  at the Argentine Base Gen. San Martin, WAP ARG-Ø8.

 

Here the message from Carlos LU7DSY:
From friday to Monday, Antarctic Base General San Martín  (LU1ZD)  will be on the air operated by Claudio Karner LU3DCK, one of the crew members of the ARA Icebreaker “Almirante Irizar” that will make a 4 day stop at the base.

The icebreaker ARA “Almirante Irizar”, which is sailing in the Antarctic Continent, plans to anchor in the next few hours in front of  San Martin Base. From there, by helicopter and landing craft, the personnel will go to the base facilities.

Argentine Base San Martin  is located on Barry Islet (68º 07′ South, 67º 08′ West), in the heart of the Antarctic Peninsula.  Barry Islet (Sanaviron Cove, Mottet Pass) is part of the Debenham Islets (Margarita Bay, Fallieres Coast), located near the Bellinhaussen Sea. Operation will last until Monday 18 inclusive.

TNX Carlos Almirón, LU7DSY.

40 years ago “Idus de Marzo”  sailed Antarctica. A nice Diploma is available to Hams

This year, 2022,  marks  the 40th Anniversary of the first Spanish expedition to Antarctica, carried out aboard the schooner “Idus de Marzo”, organized with the aim of ensuring that Spain meets the requirements for joining the Antarctic Treaty as a full member.

Over more than 10,000 miles, the schooner –which officially left the port of Candás (Asturias) on December 15, 1982–  did  travel through the islands of the Antarctic Peninsula, visiting its Scientific Bases, ending its journey in Punta Arenas (Chile), on March 29, 1983, although the “Idus de March” did not touch Cadiz, Spanish, until June 8, 1983.

Just one contact with EA1FDD is sufficient to get the Commemorative Award (See pic above), which has to be requested through qsl@limaoscar.com .   This diploma, which reflects the first mobile maritime QSL in its background, aims to be a memory of those who made the journey possible.

TNX Gabry IK1NEG

A brief story:

The Ides de Marzo  is a schooner that carried the first Spanish scientific expedition to the Antarctic Continent. On December 14, 1982, the schooner departed from the port of Candàs,Asturias, initially with a crew of eight members at the head of which was Captain Javier Babé and Santiago Cañedo, who had the presence of a journalist and two biologists. After stops in Vigo, Las Palmas and Tenerife, from where they sailed south.

On February 20, Ides de Marzo  arrived in Punta Arenas, a port where eight other expeditionaries embarked. After stocking up the schooner left for Puerto Williams in Tierra del Fuego,  then passed through Cape Horn and Drake Passage, arriving on March 4 at the South Shetland Islands in Antarctica. The schooner toured other places on the continent such as Deception Island, Yankee Bay, Foster Bay, visiting several Polar Bases.

The expedition also suffered the meteorological rigors that were expected in an area with a climate as harsh as the Antarctic, having to face winds of great intensity and vague sea, after traveling more than 17,000 miles, touched land in the port of Cadiz on June 9, 1983.

Read more at: The varied odyssey of the schooner Idus de Marzo | Spanish Geographical Society (sge.org)

Polar Philately – A recall of “Scotia” and it’s Antarctic epic

An old copy of “Il Collezionista”  an Italian  Philatelic Magazine  (Jan. 1967) reports a bit of story of the famous  Ship Scotia  which was depicted on a stamp issued by the  Falkland Islands,  Scotia was also depicted on two stamps issued by the British Antarctic Territory.

.

Scotia was a barque ( built in 1872 as the Norwegian whaler Hekla). She was purchased in 1902 by William Speirs Bruce, a natural scientist and former medical student from University of Edinburg who organised and led  the Scottish National Antarctic Expedition (SNAE) from 1902 to1904 on board of Scotia which  was refitted as a research vessel for that specific use.

.

Scotia sailed on 2 November 1902 for the Antarctic. She arrived at the Falkland islands on 6 January 1903,  She then sailed to Laurie island, South Orkneys where she arrived on 25 March.

.

Scotia overwintered in Scotia Bay where she was frozen in for eight months. She departed for the Falkland Islands on 27 November en route for Buenos Aires, Argentina where she underwent a refit. Scotia returned to Laurie Island on 14 February 1904, sailing eight days later for the Weddel Sea. She departed from the Antarctic on 21 March. Calling at Saint Helena in June, she arrived at Millport, Cumbrae, Ayrishire on 21 July, and was escorted by a number of ships to her final destination of  Gourock Renfrewshire.

After the expedition, Scotia served as a sealer, patrol vessel and collier, she was destroyed by fire in January 1916.

.

.

TNX Gabry IK1NEG

Captain Fliess Refuge, WAP ARG-NEW

Captain Fliess Refuge (64°50’41” South, 62°31’48” West) is an Argentine Refuge in Antarctica located in Neko Harbour in the Andvord Bay on the Danco Coast, on western side of the Antarctic Peninsula. The refuge was opened on April 4, 1949 and it is managed by the Argentine Navy.

.

It was inaugurated together with the Penguin Observatory and the Rescue Station under the name of Refugio Neko. His name pays tribute to the Lieutenant of the ship Felipe Fleiss of the Corvette Uruguay who rescued the Swedish Antarctic Expedition headed by the polar explorer  Otto Nordenskjold (1901-1904).

.

It has been enabled and supplied by the icebreaker ARA Almirante Irizar and the ship ARA Bahía Aguirre in various Antarctic campaigns.

The refuge was destroyed by a storm in 2009, was then rebuilt in 2011 during the 2011-2012 Antarctic summer campaign.

.

Maintenance, repair and conservation of facilities were carried out to be used as support for scientific research.
WAP has no evidence of any Ham radio activity from Captain Fliess Refuge, therefore this site remain unnumbered.

Another Great Goal by the Russian Robinson Club

On WAP website, we are normally reporting about Antarctica, but today, we wish to join our friend Yuri Zaruba UA9OBA, President of the Russian Robinson Club, to express our thanks to the operators involved in such an hard and dangerous operation at Rykacheva Island in the Arctic.

The Russian Robinson Club  has often been active from many Antarctic sites as well,  and the wonderful QSLs received, show the stories of this exceptional Club and their professional Ham radio operators.

The polar snowmobile expedition R15ØWS from the “Legends of the Arctic”, which activated the rare Rykachev Island in the Kara Sea, finished at the end of March in the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug. The expedition was dedicated to the 15Øth Anniversary of the creation of the Russian Weather Service

The Team,  included Igor Znamensky UA9KDF (Tarko-Sale, YNAO), Andrey Korobeinikov UA9LDD (Tyumen), Andrey Moiseev UAØBA (Norilsk), Viktor Kuzyakin RWØBG (Norilsk), Alexey Bystrov RT9K (Dudinka) and Andrey Prudnikov RT9K (Surgut) did travel 2980 km on snowmobiles to the island and back. During four days of work on air R15ØWS made 5635 QSOs. Of these: CW – 3294, SSB – 1323, FT8 – 1018, 20m – 2878, 30m – 609, 40m – 489, 15m – 570, 12m – 8, 17m – 1072.

69 Countries WW were worked , a real great goal!

On the Island,  a commemorative plaque was installed as a perennial recall of  Mikhail Aleksandrovich Rykachev, Director of the main geophysical observatory, in honor of the 150th anniversary of the creation of the Russian weather service,

The route of the expedition was difficult and ran through the snows of Yamal and Taimyr, frozen rivers and lakes, and the ice of the Kara Sea. Temperatures was -30*C and below. The Team spent the night in the tundra and on the ice, piercing wind while riding snowmobiles. Victor Kuzyakin RWØ0BG got frostbite of fingers of the second degree, Andrey Moiseev UAØBA fell on the ice from a snowfield, split his helmet as a result of a concussion and a bruise sternum. Traveler Aleksey Bystrov was injured on the way home, 150 km from Sopochnaya Karga. They, together with Andrei Korobeinikov UA9LDD, fell into a ravine, managed to jump off the snowmobiles, but Alexei was hit by an overturned sled. As a result, the shoulder joint was knocked out, a fracture of the humerus. In this state, he drove for almost 200 km more. Now Aleksey is in a hospital in Dudinka. We wish him  a speedy recovery! Brave guys!

Congratulations to the polar “Russian Robinsons” on completing the expedition and returning home. We will wait for the creation of a documentary about how the extreme journey “Legends of the Arctic 2022” took place.

73! Yuri Zaruba UA9OBA,

President of the Russian Robinson Club

TNX Oleg UA6GG for sending the story and pictures of this expedition!

Macquarie: A remote home renovation is underway

Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) has completed a massive resupply of Macquarie Island research station following two weeks of intense efforts by RSV Nuyina and station teams.

AAD Strategic Infrastructure Manager Adrian Young said good weather had been the helping hand needed get the job done. 350 tonnes of cargo has been delivered to renovate the station.

Macquarie Island Station (WAP AUS-Ø8) is 74 years old. Buildings will be modified, some decommissioned while field huts will be fixed up. Getting supplies onto the Island is a tricky task.

The overall renovation will include:

-Consolidating the station area and reducing the total number of buildings on the island from the existing 48 buildings

-Renovating core buildings in the station to ensure ongoing year-round operation of station and field-based research activities

-Decommissioning older redundant buildings

-Refurbishing three of the six field huts

-Assessing ways of protecting the station from ocean inundation

-Removing asbestos from all buildings.

More cargo, including new fuel tanks, will need to be delivered in the years ahead. A new Team of expeditioners now has the keys to the Station.

Read more at: Macquarie Island research station modernisation – Australian Antarctic Program (antarctica.gov.au)

Uruguay and Spain, jointly in Antarctica

The scientific projects have completed their tasks, and the equipment from Spain used by researchers who have come from that Country, to whom we offer our cooperation in terms of accommodation and use of facilities, given its volume and weight, must return to their country by sea transport.

For this reason, the Oceanographic vessel “Hesperides” belonging to the Spanish Navy, has come to collect this scientific equipments on the eve of returning to their Country.
.

.

Thanks to Instituto Antarctico Uruguayo for sharing images of the operation in conjunction with the staff of the Artigas Antarctic Scientific Base (WAP URY-Ø1)

Unprecedent  heatwave in Antarctica

This event is completely unprecedented and upended our expectations about the Antarctic climate system,’ one expert said

The average high temperature in Vostok Station (WAP RUS-14)— at the center of the eastern ice sheet — is around minus-63 (minus-53 Celsius) in March. But on Friday, the temperature leaped to zero (minus-17.7 Celsius), the warmest it’s been there during March since record keeping began 65 years ago. It broke the previous monthly record by a staggering 27 degrees (15 Celsius).

“In about 65 record years in Vostok Station, between March and October, values ​​above -30°C were never observed,” wrote Di Battista in an email.

Vostok, a Russian meteorological observatory, is about 808 miles from the South Pole and sits 11,444 feet above sea level. It’s famous for holding the lowest temperature ever observed on Earth: minus-128.6 degrees (minus-89.2 Celsius), set on July 21, 1983.

Eastern Antarctica’s Concordia Research Station (WAP MNB-Ø2), operated by France and Italy and about 350 miles from Vostok, climbed to 10 degrees (minus-12.2 Celsius), its highest temperature on record for any month of the year. Average high temperatures in March are around minus-56 (minus-48.7 Celsius).

Read more at: Un’anomala ondata di caldo in Antartide – Il Post

Māori May Have Reached Antarctica 1,000 Years Before Europeans

The Journal of The Royal Society of New Zealand published a paper by scientists from the University of Otago proving that New Zealand’s original inhabitants, the Maori, discovered Antarctica at least a thousand years before Europeans arrived there in the early 19th century. For this sensational conclusion, New Zealand researchers have studied Aboriginal oral history, as well as all sorts of documents and reports published by various organizations that do not have common academic or commercial channels. It turns out that the Polynesian leader Hui Te Rangior, together with his team, swam into the waters of the Antarctic back in the 7th century and, perhaps, was the first person to set foot on the White Continent.

Read more at:  https://thetimeshub.in/battle-for-antarctica-why-scientists-believe-that-the-apocalypse-may-break-out-on-the-white-continent

and  Battle for Antarctica. Why scientists believe that the Apocalypse may break out on the white continent – The Times Hub

Base T.Te Matienzo (WAP ARG-Ø1),  Happy 61 years!

This scientific station, is one of the Argentinean transient Bases on the white continent. Its name is in honor of Benjamín Matienzo, a pioneer of Argentine aviation. In 2009 it became the only Argentine base to have been inhabited exclusively by women.

Base  T.Te Benjamin Matienzo  (WAP ARG-Ø1) is located at 64° 58’ South and 60° 08’ West, in the Larsen Nunatak, belonging to the Foca group, on the eastern side of the Peninsula on the Weddell Sea, 186 km southwest of Marambio Base (WAP ARG-21), from where all personnel and cargo transfers are currently made.

The area where the Base is located, was immersed in the Larsen “A” Ice Shelf, completely disintegrated in 1995. Since then, with annual variations, wide sea surfaces with debris and floating icebergs have been exposed.  The facilities of the Base occupy a discontinuous strip of about 300 meters in length, at the eastern and narrower end of the nunatak. It was inaugurated on March 15, 1961, located on the old San Antonio Refuge. 

It was the first Antarctic detachment created jointly between the Argentinean  Army and the Air Force, becoming totally dependent on the latter in 1964, with the new name of Teniente Matienzo Air Base, maintaining an endowment of two single-engine Beaver aircraft, operating from the glacier adjacent to the nunatak.

Various scientific activities and historical events of international significance were developed at Matienzo. Extensive meteorological and climatological observation programmes were carried out; the glaciological status of the Matienzo-Esperanza route and the coastal channel between Robertson Island to the South was studied; topographic and aerophotographic surveys of the Larsen Ice Shelf were carried out as well.

Pic to the Left,  shows an old  QSL of LU1ZAB  dated 1961, the year of the inauguration of Matienzo Base (TNX LU2YH)

In 1965, two Argentine Gamma Centauro rockets, of national manufacture, were launched along with two balloons probes from Matienzo for X-ray measurement. They moved to the place by means of a transport plane piloted by Commander Mario Luis Olezza. That operation, placed Argentina not only among the small number of countries that built rockets in the 1960s for scientific research, but also carried out launches from Antarctica.

In addition, that same year the Matienzo Base constituted the first stop and the fulcrum of Operation South, the first Argentine Transpolar Flight. Four years later, it was also the base of operations for the creation of the Marambio Base.

In 1972,  Matienzo was deactivated as a permanent station and since then it was reopened during most of the summer campaigns to perform tasks of flight support, maintenance of facilities, refueling, meteorological observation and support for scientific activity.

In Matienzo,  there is an Antarctic Museum, that has been restored in 2018 and exhibits objects, Antarctic accessories and photographs that recall the history of the base.

In the Antarctic Summer Campaign 2008/2009, Matienzo’s staff was made up entirely of women from the Air Force, constituting a historical fact in Antarctica.

The last reopening of Matienzo was during the  2018 Antarctic Summer Campaign, being operated by a group of ten people, including military and civilians of the Air Force, fulfilling various tasks of maintenance of the facilities and preservation of the environment.

LU1ZAB  on air …

After more than 10 years of being inactive, LU1ZAB Matienzo  Ham radio Station was activated, which even provided services, as in the old days, for private communications between crew members and their families.
Pic aside  and below shows a couple of the last QSLs of LU1ZAB  dated  1970 & 1996 (TNX I1UP & I1HYW )

LU1ZAB service, was used as a bridge to make the first radio contacts, later expanded through the phone-patch service, linking  the radio equipment with the telephone line, through the Marambio Base.

Thus, the service focuses on the use of radio, in HF bands,  historically provided by amateur radio stations could be used directly by those who carry out tasks in Antarctica, as was done so many times in the past.

LU1ZAB amateur radio station’s set up,   had several antennas, which allowed testing capabilities and performance, one of the essential functions of this alternative communication service.

Antarctic Activity Week 2022- Comments and sidelines of the19th AAW

23 Special Event Stations did join the 19th edition of the International Antarctic Activity Week that last february 2022, has celebrated Antarctica.

Bands conditions were very strange  with atmospherical background noise,  and short DX openings on 10, 15 and 20 mts. 40 meters was the most usable band.

Here below some notes from lucky and unlucky participants:

 

From Cap. Eduardo Abril de Fontcuberta EA4GKV/EO4HAG WAP-242

«I am sorry to tell you that my wife is ill from COVID, not just positive, and I am quarantined.

I won’t be able to reliably operate the 2022, AAW.

Now I am more or less ok but I expect that to change very soon just as it happened with my wife».
Eduardo EA4GKV (pic aside) is now feeling better and we hope to have him aboard next week!

From Alex OE3DMA/OE19AAW WAP-341

Some results of the OE19AAW activity:

«814 QSOs on 3 bands. – 160, 80 and 17 meters. Unfortunatelly a series of storms killed my antenna system, a few days before start.  Even the Activity Week was stormy itself.

The rotator is broken, the ultrabeam UB-50 is broken (again), so I was only able to use 17 meters with the ultrabeam. The dipole did well. I made most contacts on 80 and 160 meters. I missed 40 meters this time, so the QSO rates were much lower than usual.

From Gianni I1HYW/IR1ANT WAP ØØ2

Nearly 750 QSOs on 20 & 40 mts.

From 18,00 UTC , 14MHz were practically dead even if some short but nice openings allowed QSOs with  USA, Alaska and Australia. Most of the contacts has been made within Europe.  Lots of Scandinavian stations ( OH, LA and SM as well as ES and YL)  are on the log.

.

.

From the other side, many of the participants have already got the special online free Award to recall the 19th AAW, issued by Paolo IK3GER that, in spite of the misfortune that struck him for the loss of his wife, he dedicated his time to make and send the diploma to many Hams who did request it.

TNX Paolo IK3GER

Lt.Danilo Collino IZ1KHY visit the “Chapel of the Snows” at US  McMurdo Station (WAP USA-22)

Thanks to Lt.Danilo Collino IZ1KHY who was recently involved in the 37th Italian Antarctic Season (October 2021 trough February 2022), we have got some recent pictures of the “Chapel of the Snow”, the church been visited by Danilo on his brief stay at McMurdo Station (WAP USA-22).

Situated at the end of town, McMurdo Station’s small, blue and white “Chapel of the Snows” stands out against the comparatively drab shipping container-like structures surrounding it. Visitors who step inside the wooden building enter a cozy sanctuary, complete with shelves full of hymnals, musical instruments at the back of the room, and a stained glass window above the pulpit. Other than the black and white penguin embedded in the stained glass, it looks much like any small church around the world.

Chaplain Arthur “Tom” Paine said: “This multi-denominational  chapel is for everybody. Months-long deployments away from home can be difficult for many, and the station’s chapel is there to provide a place for people to find personal support and guidance if they need it.”

Knowing the campaign that Gianni I1HYW together with the friends of WAP is conducting about a small chapel to be built at the Italian Base MZS (WAP-ITA-Ø1) , Danilo IZ1KHY found the time to take some photos, outside and inside of the “Chapel of the Snows”. Today we have the pleasure to share this holy site with the readers of our Antarctic site.

We still hope that some day, also the italians at MZS can find a site for a Chapel   … we have been suggesting it for over 20 years!

 

TNX Lt.Danilo Collino IZ1KHY

Endurance: Shackleton’s lost ship has been  found in Antarctic waters

The Icebreaker SA Agulhas II left Cape Town on 5 February, but the search with a mini-submarine began on the 17th, already in the Weddell Sea. In the final stretch of the expedition (on Friday they announced that they could not stay more than six days in the area), it has worked!

More than a century after its sinking, a scientific expedition “Endurance22” has found the remains of the shipwreck of the Antarctic Explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton (1874-1922), the “Endurance”.

The ship was crushed by sea-ice and sank in 1915, forcing Shackleton and his men to make an astonishing escape on foot and in small boats.

Video of the remains show Endurance to be in remarkable condition, even though it has been sitting in 3km (10,000ft) of water for over a century, it looks just like it did on the November day it went down.

A team of adventurers, marine archaeologists and technicians located the wreck at the bottom of the Weddell Sea, east of the Antarctic Peninsula, using undersea drones. Battling sea ice and freezing temperatures, the team had been searching for more than two weeks in a 150-square-mile area around where the ship went down in 1915. The lost vessel was found at the weekend at the bottom of the Weddell Sea. Scientists have filmed the greatest ever undiscovered shipwrecks 107 years after it sank.

Mensun Bound, the expedition’s exploration director and a marine archaeologist who has discovered many shipwrecks, said that Endurance was the finest he had ever seen. It is upright, clear of the seabed and “in a brilliant state of preservation,” he said.

Pic on the Left shows as the stern of Endurance looked in dry dock in 1914 before departure to Antarctica

Under the terms of the Antarctic Treaty, the six-decade-old pact intended to protect the region, the wreck is considered a historical monument. The submersibles did not touch it; the images and scans will be used as the basis for educational materials and museum exhibits. A documentary is planned, as well.

The Weddell Sea still remains far icier than other Antarctic waters, though in recent years ice conditions have been lighter than usual. That was the situation this year, and it helped the expedition reach the search site more easily and remain there safely. The icebreaker, Agulhas II, left the search area on Tuesday for the 11-day voyage back to Cape Town.

In addition to the expedition Team, several ice researchers were on board, including Stefanie Arndt of the Alfred Wegener Institute in Germany.

Below are some link to see about Endurance and its founding in the Antarctic Weddel Sea:
Thanks and credit to: https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-60662541

and to: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/03/09/climate/endurance-wreck-found-shackleton.html?fbclid=IwAR03NXFgZoHIllyZ4XxmYlisFM25BKpqAkuqwd4R5zQoIVukZL9y2SXIJQ4

and to: https://endurance22.org/expedition-blog

Pics on the links above, are from Falklands Maritime Heritage Trust / National Geographic

Happy International Women’s Day from King Edward Point (WAP GBR-24)

KEP  (King EdwardPoint WAP GBR-24)  is funded by Government of South Georgia & the South Sandwich Islands & run by BAS. Together, they  carry out critical marine and fisheries research to help manage the South Georgia and South Sandwich Islands Marine Protected Area, and the sustainable fisheries in the area.

Becky (station Doctor), Meghan (Fisheries Scientist), Kate (Higher Predator Scientist), Vicky (South Georgia Heritage Trust Senior Museum Assistant), Sally (GSGSSI Invasive Plant team) and Sarah (Station Leader) make up half of the fantastic KEP team this season.

Antarctic Search for Meteorites program (ANSMET)

The Antarctic Search for Meteorites program (ANSMET) is a US-led field-based science project that recovers meteorite specimens from Antarctica. Since 1976 we have recovered more than 22,000 specimens from meteorite stranding surfaces along the Transantarctic Mountains. These specimens are a reliable, continuous source of new, non-microscopic extraterrestrial material and support thousands of scientists from around the globs as they seek essential “ground-truth” concerning the materials that make up the asteroids, planets and other bodies of our solar system. The study of ANSMET meteorites has greatly extended our knowledge of the materials and conditions in the primeval nebula from which our solar system was born, revealed the complex and exotic geologic nature of asteroids, and proved, against the conventional wisdom, that some specimens represent planetary materials, delivered to us from the Moon and Mars, free of charge.

300,000 meteorites are hiding across Antarctica as per a  “Treasure map” created by artificial intelligence.
Although meteorites are known to fall all over the world, the environment and unique processes in Antarctica make them somewhat easier to find on the pristine, snowy landscape. Still, collecting meteorites in  Antarctica is physically grueling and hazardous work.
Recently published “Universe Today”‘,  the study has been conducted by scientists from the Delft University of Technology in The Netherlands
Read amore at :
https://www.wionews.com/science/30000-meteorites-are-hiding-across-antarctica-as-per-this-treasure-map-created-by-artificial-intelligence-451559

and also at:  https://www.sciencealert.com/treasure-map-predicts-the-hiding-places-of-300-000-meteorites-across-antarctica

FAST SEAS RISE BECAUSE OF MELTING ANTARCTICA’S ICE

A Team of Thirty-two scientists are sailing to “the place in the world that’s the hardest to get to” so they can better figure out how much and how fast seas will rise because of global warming eating away at Antarctica’s ice.
The Team did start a more than two-month mission aboard an American research ship to investigate the crucial area where the massive but melting Thwaites glacier faces the Amundsen Sea and may eventually lose large amounts of ice because of warm water. The Florida-sized glacier has gotten the nickname the “doomsday glacier” because of how much ice it has and how much seas could rise if it all melts — more than two feet (65 centimeters) over hundreds of years.
Because of its importance, the United States and the United Kingdom are in the midst of a joint $50 million mission to study Thwaites, the widest glacier in the world by land and sea. Not near any of the continent’s research stations, Thwaites is on Antarctica’s western half, east of the jutting Antarctic Peninsula, which used to be the area scientists worried most about.

Thwaites is putting about 50 billion tons of ice into the water a year. The British Antarctic Survey says the glacier is responsible for four percent of global sea rise, and the conditions leading to it to lose more ice are accelerating, University of Colorado ice scientist Ted Scambos said from the McMurdo land station last month.
Read more at: Scientists set out to explore Thwaites glacier to find out how fast seas will rise because of melting Antarctica’s ice (firstpost.com)

Untold Stories of Antarctica by UKAHT

Marking International Women’s Day, Antarctic experts will share extraordinary untold stories from the icy continent’s past. Join UK Antarctic Heritage Trust on Tuesday 8th March for Untold Stories of Antarctica

Shining a light on the tales of women who have broken the ice ceiling of Antarctic science and exploration, they will offer new perspectives on the history of human endeavour in the region, and ask why their narratives and achievements have been largely overlooked and under reported until now.

Morag Seag, a PhD candidate at the University of Cambridge, will  tell  the story of women’s integration into Antarctic field science in the mid-twentieth century.  Amelia Urry, also a PhD candidate at the University of Cambridge, will share stories of the women behind Antarctic mapping in the 1950s.

Antarctica in Sight: Live is a series of online talks, bringing together explorers, scientists, artists and historians with a unique understanding of the icy continent. Antarctica In Sight: Live will delve into the lesser-known stories from Antarctica’s past, discuss the major technological innovations of the present, and look ahead to the continent’s role in the future of our planet

Read more at: UKAHT – Antarctica In Sight: Live! | Talks Series

German postage stamp newspaper – Deutsche Briefmarken-Zeitung

Deutsche Briefmarken-Zeitung (DBZ) is a German philatelic trade journal that has been published since 1925 .On February issue of DBZ,  Harald Kuhl, DL1AX has pubblished an interesting article about the summer italian Station WAP ITA-Ø1, MZS (named after Mario Zucchelli) in Antarctica, from which has recently operated  Lt. Danilo Collino IAØ/IZ1KHY .

The article includes a copy of Danilo’s QSL and the stamp  dedicated to the Italian scientist Mario Zucchelli (1944 – 2003), for years a reference figure for the Italian Antarctic Program.

Issued by TAAF (Terres Australes et Antarctiques Françaises)  in 2019   the stamp  did  celebrate the important contribution of Mario Zucchelli  to the realization of the French-Italian Concordia Station (WAP MNB-Ø3), depicted in the stamp along with the portrait of Zucchelli on a tricolor background.

.

.

In addition, DBZ magazine shows the special stamps issued to recall  on the 100st Anniversary of the death of Ernest Shackleton who, at age of 47, made a final mission to Antarctica, but would sadly pass away on the island of South Georgia on January 4th, 1922.

January 4th, 2022 did mark 100 years since his passing.

.

TNX Volker DL8JDX

Turkey  Sientific Research Base (WAP TUR-NEW) on  Horseshoe Island.

Daily Sabah, reports that a Team of Turkish researchers begin work in Antarctica. On Monday Febr. 14th, they did launch field studies  as part of Turkey’s sixth National Antarctic Science Expedition.
The team arrived on Horseshoe Island (67°49’40” South, 67°12’08” West), where a temporary Turkish science base is located on the world’s coldest continent, and will move on to Dismal Island where a Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) station operated by Turkey is located.

The 20 strong Team reached the island following a 21 days journey, including a weeklong sail from Chile, as they left Istanbul late last January to conduct scientific research. The team carrying over 2 tons of logistics materials has already begun their fieldwork.

More at: https://www.dailysabah.com/turkey/turkish-researchers-begin-work-in-antarctica/news

According to the evidence received, Turkey  Scientific Research Base (67°49’40” South, 67°12’08” West) on Horseshoe Island will enter pm WAP-WADA Directory as WAP TUR-NEW.

CALLING ANTARCTICA 2022 , a free diploma for the 19th AAW by IK3GER

Every year, in the month of February, a special radio activity called ‘ANTARCTIC ACTIVITY WEEK ‘ take places on the Ham radio bands. This year, the 19th AAW will be held from February 21st to the 27th, 2022.

Our good friend Paolo Corsetti IK3GER from Venice Italy, has set a free diploma which available to OM and SWL at the end of the Event.  Just few very simple rules have to be followed as shown below:

All WAP (WORLDWIDE ANTARCTIC PROGRAM) stations have a special WAP reference number that will be passed during the QSO. This reference must be included for each QSO in the WAP Ref. column of your application form.

The diploma is issued to OM/SWL in 2 classes:

  1. Basic” minimum of 5 QSO/HRD with different WAP references,
  2. First Class” 10 or more QSO/HRD with different WAP references.

Only QSO/HRD made between February 21st and 27th, 2022 are valid for this diploma.

Hams may download the application form in Excel here

QSL cards are not needed. Endorsement is available for band and mode. The award is free, and sent out via email as a PDF file (JPG on request). Send your application via email to the award manager IK3GER, Paolo, at  corsetti.paolo@libero.it

EXAMPLE OF APPLICATION can be found on the pdf file here aside –> Rules for Diploma AAW 2022

N.B. – WAP reference is mandatory in your application

TNX Paolo IK3GER

Antarctic Activity Week on the French HamLab

While the 19th edition of the just started  Antarctic Activity Week is involving thousands of radio amateurs looking for the several Special Event Stations that are active this whole week on the Ham bands ,    Yoann Daniel F4IGV,   the founding President and webmaster  of HamLab Association in France, has just pubblish an article for promote  this year’s edition of the Antarctic Activity Week on HamLab  website. See:  https://hamlab.eu/19th-antarctic-activity-weekend/

.

Pay a visit, it’s a very interesting page which can eventually be translated in your own language by using the availability of Google translator.  HamLab website (www.hamlab.eu ) is  very attractive, a great source of informations for Hams.

TNX F4IGV

ARGENTINA ANTARCTICA DAY

February 22; next Tuesday, is the “Argentina Antarctica Day” and marks the 118th Anniversary of Argentina’s uninterrupted presence in Antarctica.

On that day,  in 1904, the Argentine flag waved for the first time on Laurie Island in the Orkney Islands group, where the Orkney Base (WAP ARG-15) currently operates.

Marambio Foundation writes: «Argentina Antarctica Day was instituted by Law No. 20,827/74, on February 22 of each year, determining that on that day,  the Argentine national flag will be hoisted to the top in the public buildings of the Nation and acts alluding to our inalienable rights of sovereignty over Argentine Antarctica in all educational institutions.

More information on February 22 – Argentine Antarctica Day, at:  www.marambio.aq/es/diaantartida2022redes.html

Marambio Foundations www.marambio.aq/redessociales.html –  Pay a visit to: www.marambio.aq

Several years ago, almost all the Argentine Bases in Antarctica, used to be on air on Febr. 22nd to celebrate the National event and a special QSL-Award used to be issued to the Hams who made contact with this Bases. Above one of this QSL-Award issud on 22 febr. 1983 for a contact with LU1ZG at Base General Belgrano II (WAP ARG-Ø6)

In conjunction with Argentina Antarctica Day, WAP is yearly running the Antarctic Activity  Week, an international event,  now in its 19th edition which will be held in the week from 21 to 27 February 2022.

See: http://www.waponline.it/antarctic-activity-week/aaw-2022/

Join us and enjoy Antarctica

K4A joining  the Antarctic Activity Week 2022

The 19th edition of the Antarctic Activity Week launched by WAP (Worldwide Antarctic Program) in the year 2002, is almost ready to start. The official date this year will be 21 to 27 February 2022. So far, 21 Special Event Stations have confirmed their participation to the 2022 edition of the AAW .

Congrats to Phil Finkle K6EID from Marietta GA, USA for being one of the most present Ham into the Antarctica Activity Week with his special call K4A WAP-Ø73, since the beginning.

First licensed as KN6EID in October 1957 while residing in Burbank, California,  Phil was upgraded to Extra Class in May 1984 (at Long Beach FCC Field Office before VECs started).

Here’s Phil AAW annual stats for K4A

2021, 696 QSOS all on digital FT4 and FT8

2020, 737 QSOs

2019, 952 QSOs

2018, 457 QSOs

2017, 776 QSOs

2016, 340 QSOs

2015, 338 QSOs

2014, 545 QSOs

2013, 473 QSOs

2012, 783 QSOs

2011, 916 QSOs

2010, 635 QSOs

2009, 699 QSOs

2008, 712 QSOs

2007, 1101 QSOs

The Worldwide Antarctic Program (sponsor of WAP Antarctic awards) assigned Phil the special WAP-Ø73 which is eligible for WAP awards during this operation.  Phil has a special QSL available for those making a QSO with K4A during those AAW periods, which have to be requested  via the bureau  or direct  to K6EID home address: Philip W. Finkle, 3353 Forest Creek Dr, Marietta, GA 30064 USA, with SASE, current IRC, or two green stamps for direct return.

Phil will shortly 82! WAP wish him a great happy Birthday

TNX Phil K6EID

Pioneering laurels: who was the first to find Antarctica

The legend of El Dorado around the South Pole has fascinated many Europeans since Sir Francis Drake. On the first day of 1739, the looked at the cloudy, foggy and ice-bound coast – the one that would later be called Bouvet Island. Then he returned home with a description of majestic icebergs and black-and-white penguins that looked like «large ducks, but with fins instead of wings».
For more than four centuries, Sir Francis Drake has been world-famous for his feats as a master mariner – the captain who “singed the King of Spain’s beard” with his daredevil attack on the fleet at Cadiz, and who led the British Navy to victory against the Spanish Armada in 1588.

.

A book of Kevin Jackson  “The Queen’s Pirate: Sir Francis Drake”  have been chosen as a Book of the Week in the Guardian and a Book of the Year in the Express.

Kevin Jackson is an  English writer, film-maker, radio producer and television director for the BBC); Associate Arts Editor for The Independent. Kevin Jackson  has written for The New Yorker, Granta, The Sunday Times (London), The Guardian, and Vogue, among other publications.

.

..

.

Jean-Baptiste Charles Bouvet de Lozier was born in 1705. Orphaned at the age of 7, upon receiving his education in Paris he was sent to work in the shipyards at St. Malo. He studied navigation and received the rank of lieutenant in the Compagnie des Indes in 1731. With an insatiable desire to explore the southern seas, he petitioned his employers in 1733 with a plan of exploration. He asked for two ships consisting of a frigate and a larger trading vessel. For this, he promised to search the southern seas for land that could accommodate French trading vessels on route to the Far East.

Ukrainian  Academic Vernadsky  Station (WAP UKR-Ø1), Antarctica

Sergiy Shutyayev UT9UX,  is active  (mostly 20 mts SSB) as EM1U from Ukrainian Antarctic Station Academic Vernadsky (WAP UKR-Ø1), located on Galindez Island , 65°15’South, 64°16’ West
He will operate on HF Bands untill April, 2022

QSL VIA UT7UA:

Roman Bratchyk
P.O. Box B-19, Kyiv, 01001,Ukraine

TNX Pavlo UT1KY for the update and picture

ZS7ANF & SQ1SGB, rendezvous  at Wolf’s Fang Runway (WAP MNB-12)

Almost at the end of their Antarctic seson, our friends Oleg ZS7ANF and Sebastian SQ1SGB meet at Wolf’s Fang Runway. (see pics aside)

It was a friendly meeting between two Hams,  involved in different activities in Antarctica.
Both,  in their spare time, have been active on HF;   Sebastian signing VP8/SQ1SGB at Halley VI-a Base (WAP GBR-40)  was mostly active daily on 40 mts SSB,  while Oleg ZS7ANF did use CW on 20, 30 and 40 mts from Wolf’s Fang Runway (WAP MNB-12).

QSL for 2021-2022 Antarctic season have to be requested as follow:
ZS7ANF via RK1PWA or via ZS1ANF

VP8/SQ1SGB via EB7DX

Wolf’s Fang Runway:

71°32’ South, 08°50’ East,  Wolf’s Fang Runway is the only exclusive private runaway in Antarctica. With the assistance of the South African science vessel, the fuel supplly for the Camp is delivered to the edge of Antarctica. A traverse Team then embarks on a journey of 800 Km across the Finbul ice shelf to WFR. Using specialist techniques and machinery,  a runway that is uncompromising in its safety and that minimises the likelihood of delay, has been created. With experienced pilots making more than 20 flights per season, Wolf’s Fang is now regarded as a well-established and reliable airbridge between Africa and Antarctica.

Pic on the left,  shows the A-340 aircraft were Seba is embarked on, in departure to Cape Town

Wolf’s Fang Camp in the vicinity is a  newest camp where luxury and adventure meets in the mountains of Queen Maud Land. The Camp is equipped with 6 heated tents with twin or single bed and ensuite washroom.

Seba will be home  at Biesiekierz, Poland about March 10th

Oleg will leave WFR on Febr. 18th

TNX Oleg ZS7ANF & Oleg UA6GG ( DX Trophy) for sending us the pics

VP8/SQ1SGB, ending his Antarctic Season at Halley VI-a Base

Sebastian VP8/SQ1SGB (picture aside at Halley VI-a Base-WAP GBR-40) is actually packing  his Ham radio gear and will be ready to fly out next Wensday febr. 10th.

Seba will fly to Wolf’s Fang Runway and then, directly from  WF to CapeTown

That’s a great news as,  for sure,  Oleg Sakharov ZS7ANF and Sebastian Gleich SQ1SGB will meet at Wolf’s Fang Runway (WAP MNB-12).

In a recent message , Oleg said: We will continue to be on air , maybe in the afternoon. It remains to take one plane on the 10th (the one of Seba). The next one,  is already ours on the 18th.

In other words, the 10th Febr. ZS7ANF and SQ1SGB will meet at WFR, then, a week after  Oleg will end his long Antarctic course,  and on Febr. 18th,  he will fly back.

WAP wish to thanks both,  Seba and Oleg for their efforts to be on air in spite of the poor propagation and the noise which has affected the HF bands, almost the time  of this strange 2021-2022 Antarctic Season.

Have a safe journey guys and a happy return back home

TNX SQ1SGB & ZS7ANF

Antarctic Heritage Trust- Catch up on Antarctica In Sight: Live!

Several interesting features on February  e-bulletin of Antarctic Heritage Trust : «our Antarctic season is underway at last. To be able to return a team to Port Lockroy has felt like a significant milestone for us. Despite the many challenges along the way, Lucy, Kit and Tank are finally there and getting stuck into the vital work, work which is proving all the more essential – two years away from the site means there is much maintenance to do….»

To receive the bulletin, just drop a mail to: UK Antarctic Heritage Trust : info@ukaht.org

.

.

If you missed our free online event The Future of the Antarctic Treaty  why not catch up and watch it on the UK Antarctic heritage Trust’s  YouTube channel. You can find recordings of our other Antarctica In Sight: Live! events there too, along with a host of other interesting videos at UK Antarctic Heritage Trust – YouTube

.

Read more at: http://www.ukaht.org/

IAØ/IZ1KHY at Mario Zucchelli Station (WAP ITA-Ø1)

Third mission in Antarctica, for  Lt. Danilo Collino, expert mountain Scout of the Italian Army. After being active from Concordia Station (WAP MNB-Ø3) and from Dome C Summer Camp (WAP MNB-14) see pic side, Danilo is now at Mario Zucchelli Station (WAP ITA-Ø1) till mid February.

He is often at 14140 at his early moning  (16,00 UTC) looking for Europe as well as earlier  when conditions are good, for Asia and Pacific he takes care of the many VKs, ZLs and JAs.

In the following days he will check 14243 for North America  and he promised to exploit all of his free time to give a chance to everybody, to work Antarctica.

At Mario Zucchelli Station (WAP-Ø1) he is operating from the Radio Room of the Base when it is free of use by the Air traffic control personnel. (see picture on the right)

.

A big thanks to  Steve VK3KTT for recording the contact between David VKØ/FT4YM/p at Casey Base (WAP AUS-Ø1) and Danilo IAØ/IZ1KHY at Mario Zucchelli Station (WAP ITA-Ø1)

.

.

.

Also, at Concordia Station Danilo did operate briefly from the Radio Room of the Control Tower, while at Dome C Summer camp (WAP MNB-14) he did operate from a tent,  using the same equipment of David FT4YM who was for two months together with Danilo.

.

A big thanks to the Chief commanders of the vaious sites , for having allowed to operate on the Ham Radio frequencies and of course to Danilo and David for having given many many Radioamateurs WW the thrill of a radio contact with Antarctica.

QSL for IAØ/IZ1KHY goes via I1URL

QSL for FT4YM/p  goes via F5PFP

.

.

TNX Danilo IAØ/IZ1KHY & David FT4YM/p 

Researchers have discovered a new colony of gentoo penguins on Andersson Island on the Antarctic Peninsula

The crew of the M/V Arctic Sunrise, an icebreaker vessel owned by Greenpeace, were sailing through Antarctica’s Weddell Sea this month when they saw something they didn’t expect.

One of the scientists on board, Alex Borowicz  was looking through the binoculars from the bridge of our shipLouisa Casson, an ocean campaigner with Greenpeace UK currently on board the Arctic Sunrise, told Mongabay in a video interview. “He spotted what he thought looked like a penguin colony, where we had seen no previous records.”

As the ship drew near, the crew discovered a colony of gentoo penguins (Pygoscelis papua) consisting of about 75 chicks living on Andersson Island on the east side of the Antarctic Peninsula, previously unknown to science. Scientists say this is the furthest south the species has ever been seen in this part of Antarctica, and posit their presence here to the impacts of climate change.

Read more at:
https://news.mongabay.com/2022/01/as-climate-change-melts-antarctic-ice-gentoo-penguins-venture-further-south/

R/V Arctic Sunrise is an ice-strengthened vessel operated by Greenpeace. The vessel was built in Norway in 1975 and has a gross tonnage of 949, a length of 50.5 metres (166 ft) and a maximum speed of 13 knots (24 km/h; 15 mph). Under the original name of Polarbjørn (“Polar bear”), she was used as a sealing ship. The vessel was subsequently used by the French government. Greenpeace purchased the ship in 1995.

Little Dome C (Beyond Epica Camp) WAP MNB-15, New Entry on WAP- WADA Directory

Little Dome C, is an area of 10 square km, located at 75° 17’ 57” South, 122° 26’ 43” East, about 40 km from the Italian-French Concordia Station, on the East Antarctic plateau,  one of the most extreme places on the Earth.

On 1st June 2019 the Beyond EPICA project started with the aim of drilling for and recovering ice from up to 1.5 Million years ago in Antarctica. The project will last seven years and is funded by the European Commission with 11 million euros. It is coordinated by Carlo Barbante, director of the Institute of Polar Sciences of the National Research Council of Italy (Cnr-Isp) and professor at Ca’ Foscari University of Venice.

The project involves twelve European and non-European international research institutes and will benefit from synergies with the French Polar Institute and the Italian National Antarctic Programme activities at the Italian-French Concordia Station.

The actual campaign, at Little Dome C will last until January 2022.

At the light of the brief activity by David Brunet F4FKT who did sign FT4YM/p from Little Dome C, from 15 to 20 December 2021 (info posted by Mehdi F5PFP), a New WAP Reference has been given as  WAP MNB-15.

QSL for FT4YM/p has to be requested direct to F5PFP

TNX F4FKT & F5PFP

“Antarctica”, the first fully electric polar  vehicle by Venturi

Inspired by HSH Prince Albert II of  Monaco Exploration,  after he visited Antarctica in 2009, the very first EV’s (Electric Vehicles) it’s currently in service at Belgium’s Princess Elisabeth Antarctica Station (WAP BEL-Ø2). The Prince, wanted to develop a machine that could operate on the Icy Continent without affecting the ecosystem.

See: https://www.autocar.co.uk/car-news/move-electric/venturi-antarctica-first-fully-electric-polar-research-vehicle?fbclid=IwAR3XEKM5-ihmc-vqfzTe7bTbOIIUOrw0Btc5gEOI0MEVNUDhPqIkIeVHtb8

Measuring 3400cm long and 2180cm high, the “Antarctica EV” weighs 2.5 tons  and can carry up to six people plus equipment. There’s room for two in the front cabin, with an adaptable rear section that features four folding seats.

In operation at the Princess Elisabeth Research Station since December 10, Venturi’s electric tracked vehicle provides an environmentally responsible means of transport for the staff at the zero-emission Belgian base.
Read more at: Behind the scenes of the Venturi Antarctica, the first electric polar exploration vehicle (monaco-tribune.com)

Good chance for Polar Philately’s collectors  to get special envelopes to celebrate the event!
TNX Eddy De Busschere @ Belgian Polar Expedition Society (BPES)

Valery Sushkow  RW3GW/RMØL, Honorary President of RRC, awarded  with a Medal

Valery Sushkov  (RW3GW/RMØL) Honorary President of the Russian Robinson Club, is a great Expeditionner with several activities in Antarctica and in the Arctic.

I had a plesure to meet Valery RW3GW and his brother Albert RV3GW  about 30 years ago when,  both were young island chasers  and we became good friends!

Recently, on January 17, 2022, the Moscow office of the Law and Order-Shield Foundation did award the explorer-traveler  Valery Sushkov (RW3GW-RMØL) with a commemorative Medal  In commemoration of the 200th anniversary of the discovery of Antarctica by Russian navigators F. Bellingshausen and M. Lazarev on the sloops Vostok and Mirny.

The award was presented to Valery Sushkov RMØL by the head of the organizing committee of the project “Russian Antarctica. History in continuation” Alexander Ilyin.

Earlier in 1999-2000,  Valery Sushkov was a member of the International Complex Antarctic Expedition to the South Pole (CE9/R3CA, R3RRC/ANT), a participant and organizer of more than 100 different expeditions, and in 2021 he was awarded the Geographical Oscar in the nomination “Travel & Expedition” for the Pacific Historical and Geographical Expedition “Marine Heritage of Primorsky Kray” and the postal experiment POSTVENTURE postventure.ru.

The medal was minted specifically for the round-the-world expedition of sailboats of Rosrybolovstvo by order of the Presidential Grants Fund and the non-profit partnership for promoting the development of cinema and tourism Kit. The obverse of the medal exactly copies the original, made by order of Emperor Alexander I for the expedition teams of Thaddeus Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev. On the reverse is a dedication to the circumnavigation of the sailing ships Kruzenshtern, Sedov and Pallada.

.

.

WAP expresses all the admiration and complacency for the important acknowledgments to his friend Valery Sushkov who,  with his many DX-peditions has given to the Radioamateurs from all over the World , the thrill of having logged rare spots,  both in Antarctica and in the Arctic!

TNX Oleg Latyshev UA6HPR/UA6GG @ DX Trophy Awards Group

Argentina: Covid-19 hits Antarctic Esperanza Research Base

For the first time since the start of the pandemic,  Coronavirus has reached an Argentine research base in Antarctica, causing the evacuation of nine unvaccinated staff who tested positive for Covid-19, an official said Thursday.

Twenty-four of the 43 scientists and military personnel resident at Argentina’s Esperanza Base (WAP ARG-Ø4) have been infected, Patricia Ortuzar of the government’s National Directorate of the Antarctic told AFP.

Nine of the 24, who have no symptoms, were evacuated by helicopter as a precaution.

They had been in Antarctica since before the start of Argentina’s vaccination campaign in 2021, and were due to travel to the capital to be jabbed.

They had decided to wait to get their shots in Argentina, fearing having to deal with possible side-effects in the extreme environment that is Antarctica.

Thanks and credit:  https://www.france24.com/en/live-news/20220120-nine-evacuated-as-covid-19-hits-antarctic-research-base?fbclid=IwAR1FpPSZE5yzpO61SQhlb0W1ajxjIUjtJINtG3ZuiT5oO2XlwzhE9lU9WpA

.

.

Esperanza Research Base
At  63°24′ South and  56°59′ West on a rocky surface at 25 meters high and 30 meters from the coastline,  Esperanza Base (WAP ARG-Ø4) is located in Hope Bay, Trinity Peninsula, the northernmost part of the Antarctic Peninsula.
The structure was inaugurated in 1952 as a permanent base, and it now consists of 43 buildings for a total covered area of 374.400 sqm. It accommodates up to 90 people during the summer which fall to 55 in the winter season. In addition, around 1,100 tourists visit the structure each year during the austral summer.

Dome C  Summer Camp,  WAP MNB-14 (New entry)

Dome C Summer Camp  is now entering  on WAP-WADA  Antarctic Directory as  WAP MNB- 14

Following the operation by  David Brunet F4FKT who did sign FT4YM/p (November & Dicember 2021 and January 2022), at Dome C-Summer Camp  75° 05’ 59” South, 123° 19’ 56” East, a new  WAP reference  has been issued.

The picture aside , taken recently  by the helicopter, shows both sites (Dome C Summer Camp to the left and Concordia Station to the right). The two sites have really 2 official names and are separated each other  by a land strip.

Dome C summer Camp (75°05’59” South, 123°19’ 56” East), is a large camp, detached  by  about 700/800 mts from Concordia Station. This was the original site  of the first Epica project  then,  it was the support  base for the workers who built Concordia Station.

Dome C Smmer camp was never dismantled and actually is used as  a depot  with housing and warehouse. All the scientific equipments are inside the towers of Concordia and inside the shelters scattered around the Base.

.

.

Note that, last  Hams allowed to operate Ham Radio from inside Concordia Station (WAP MNB-Ø3) were Paride Legovini  IAØ/IZ3SUS (year 2014)  and Marco de Pas (IK5SQX-DK5SQX) signing IAØ/DK5SQX (year 2019).
Picture on the right, show Paride Legovini IAØ/IZ3SUS at the Radio Room at Concordia Station.

19th Antarctic Activity Week

The 19th edition of the Antarctic Activity Week will start next February 21st and will last till February 28th 2022. Note that this is the date suggested, but everyone can get involved before or after this window.

For 19 years we, Antarctic enthusiasts, chasers, DXers and lovers of the Icy Continent  have been joining this annual event.

While we thanks the Hams that have already signed in, we remind every Hams to join. Apply your special call and are pleases to enlist in this Antarctic adventure.

Last entry for this year AAW, is François Bergez F8DVD who said: «I am happy to join the 19th Antarctic Activity Week. My call will be TM19AAW, WAP-344  and activation from February 7 to 21.

Propagation is going better and better with new cycle 25 , so I’m sure it will be a new great event.

CU on air to all Antarctic Enthusiasts !  QSL via my home call F8DVD».

Check : http://www.waponline.it/antarctic-activity-week/aaw-2022/ to see the stations that have already confirm their participation … and come onboard with your special call to celebrate Antarctica!

Antarctic attractions: Six landmarks in Christchurch, NZ

An interesting view of the six landmarks  have been published on Newstalk ZB, by Thomas Bywater, NZ Herald.
Captain Scott’s Hut, Robert Falcon Scott Memorial, The last sled dog statue,
are just some of the so many interesting features that characterize this important center which represents the bridge to the Icy Continent.

Just pay a visit to Antarctic attractions: Six landmarks in Christchurch (newstalkzb.co.nz) to get introduced and open your door to a place that represents one of the only five cities in the world with direct travel links to AntarcticaChristchurch as home to the Antarctic Explorer’s hub.

Thanks and credit to New Zealand Herald.

Base Petrel (WAP ARG-17) will become a permanent Base in Antarctica

Good news is coming from Argentina: Base Naval Petrel WAP ARG-17 will return to be a permanent Base in Antarctica! How can the Old Timers forget when LU1ZR & LU5ZR were almost every evening on HF bands making contacts with the Antarctic Chasers?

Well, one of the objective of the 118th Summer Antarctic Campaign is the refurbishment of Base Petrel, so that it can run again throughout the year.

Being on a plain at sea level, a rarity in Antarctica, Petrel has a microclimate that allows the base to be operable at any time of the year.

In addition, due to its location on Dundee Island, it can be used as an Antarctic logistics bridge integrated into the Ushuaia Pole project, in which,  the construction of a dock, facilities and service housing for personnel is planned, in order to be able to supply the Argentinean Bases quickly and efficiently.

Petrel did operate as an Antarctic permanent Base from 1952 to 1974, when after a fire it began to be operated just as a temporary Base.

The national government has just granted additional resources to the Ministry of Defense that will be owed to the reopening of Petrel Base and to continue with the re-equipment of the Armed Forces as planned.

Since 2013, a plan was drawn up to reactivate it as a permanent logistics hub on the Antarctic continent.

The Ministry of Defense informs that, through the budget modification made by the Executive Power through a Decree published in the Official Gazette,  more resources will be allocated to tasks related to the reopening of the Petrel Base in Antarctica.

Thanks and Credit to: https://www.argentina.gob.ar/noticias/el-gobierno-nacional-otorgara-recursos-adicionales-al-ministerio-de-defensa-que-seran

Knowing the Antarctic Domes

What are the “Domes” ?

They are very flat snow summits across the Antarctic High plateau. From what I know, they’ve been named more or less according to their altitude while being discovered by the first pilots to fly airplanes across the continent in the 50s.

There are several  “Domes” in Antarctica as shown on the Map:

Dome A, Dome B (aka Ridge B), 200 km upstream of the Vostok ice core),  Dome C, Talos Dome, Titan Dome, an unnamed ice Dome located near to South Pole and Dome Fuji

 

Dome A (aka Dome Argus)

Dome Argus at 80°22′ South77°22′ East,  has a surface elevation of 4,093 m. It is the highest place in East Antarctica and also one of the least-known places on the globe. An automatic weather station provides data from this remote site.

Dome Argus lies near one end of a ridge about 60 km long and 10 km wide. The ice there is more than 3,000 m thick, overlaying the subglacial Gamburtsev Mountains.
At Dome A, an  Automatic weather station (AWS) was set up as part of anAustralian-Chinese collaboration in January 2005. No ground-based scientific investigation had been made at this site before the arrival of the Chinese over-snow traverse team.

Source: Dome Argus – Australian Antarctic Program (antarctica.gov.au)

Dome B (aka Ridge B)

3807 m above sea level at , 79.02°South, 93.69°East, Dome B was discovered at a distance of 170 km from the Russian Vostok Station.

Source: First glaciological investigations at Ridge B, central East Antarctica | Antarctic Science | Cambridge Core

Dome C

Dome C, also known as Dome CirceDome Charlie or Dome Concordia, is situated on top of the Antarctic Polar Plateau, the world’s largest frozen desert ever, at an elevation of 3,233 metres (10,607 ft) above sea level, is one of several summits or “Domes” of the Antarctic Ice Sheet.

Dome C  is the site of the Concordia Research Station (75°06’06” South, 123°23’ 43” East)  jointly operated by France and Italy.

In the 1970s, Dome C was the site of ice core drilling by field teams of several nations. It was called Dome Charlie. In 1992, France decided to build a new station on the Antarctic Plateau. The program was later joined by Italy. In 1996, a French-Italian team established a Summer camp at Dome C. The two main objectives of the camp were the provision of logistical support for the European Project for IceCoring in Antarctica (EPICA) and the construction of a permanent research station. The new all-year facility,Concordia Station, became operational in 2005.
The so called Dome C summer Camp (75°05’59” South, 123°19’ 56” East), about 700 mts from Concordia Station  was never dismantled and actually is used as it was in 1996. This Dome C summer camp, pic aside, before the construction of the two towers of Concordia, was the support base of the first Epica project, then it was the support site for the workers who built Concordia Station. Actually, Dome C summer Camp is just a depot with housing and warehouse. All the scientific equipments are inside the towers of Concordia and inside the shelters scattered around the Base. “Dome C Summer Camp” will be add as WAP MNB-NEW to WAP-WADA Directory.

Most of the cargo coming by traverse from Dumont d’Urville Station, covering 1,200 km in 7 to 12 days depending on weather conditions,  moved to Dome C and  unloaded at the summer camp. Station personnel and light cargo instead arrive by air, using Twin Otter aircraft from DDU or Mario Zucchelli Station at 1200 km.

The Project Epica Beyond  at Little Dome C is about 32 km from Concordia and the site is called Little Dome C-Epica Beyond,  (WAP MNB-NEW).

Dome C North Radar

The radar of the SuperDARN network is  located at 1.4 km from the Franco-Italian base Concordia, at Dome C, i.e. very close to the Antarctic geomagnetic pole, at about 3200 m above sea level. This makes it the highest geomagnetic latitude radar and the highest altitude radar. Its field of view conjugates with those of the McMurdo radar and the just installed South Pole radar.’

Super Dual Auroral Radar Network (SuperDARN) radar installed at the Concordia Station in Antarctica and denominated Dome C North (DCN) saw the first light. SuperDARN is an international network of HF radars that observe the effects produced in the ionosphere by the chain of phenomena taking place in the Earth’s space environment. DCN and its companion radar Dome C East (DCE) are positioned nearby the southern geomagnetic pole with their Field of View extending towards the auroral latitudes. Here we present the analysis of the first year of observations as a function of the interplanetary conditions.

Source: Dome C North radar, a new radar of the SuperDARN network: the first year of observations. – NASA/ADS (harvard.edu)

and: SuperDARN radar now operating at Dome C in Antarctica!

Talos Dome

Talos Dome is an ice dome on the edge of the East Antarctic plateau; because accumulation is higher here than in other domes of East Antarctica, the ice preserves a good geochemical and palaeoclimatic record. A new map of the Talos Dome area locates the dome summit elevation (2318.5m)  using the global positioning system (GPS) (72˚47’ 14’’South, 159˚04’ 2’’ East).
Source : Geophysical survey at Talos Dome, East Antarctica: the search for a new deep-drilling site | Annals of Glaciology | Cambridge Core

and Dr. Jérôme CHAPPELLAZ – Some of my pictures taken during scientific field expeditions (jerome-chappellaz.com)

Titan Dome

Based on sparse data, Titan Dome has been identified as having a higher probability of containing ice that would capture the middle Pleistocene transition (1.25 to 0.7 Ma). New aerogeophysical observations (radar and laser altimetry) collected over Titan Dome, located about 200 km from the South Pole within the East Antarctic Ice Sheet, were used to characterize the region (e.g., geometry, internal structure, bed reflectivity, and flow history) and assess its suitability as a paleoclimate ice core site.

Source: TC – Aerogeophysical characterization of Titan Dome, East Antarctica, and potential as an ice core target (copernicus.org)

Dome Fuji (aka Dome F)

Dome Fuji also called Dome F or Valkyrie Dome is an ice dome rising to about 3,810 m (12,500 ft) above sea level in the eastern part of Queen Maud Land (77°30’South, 37°30’ East).

Dome F it’s the second-highest summit or ice dome of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet . Dome F is the site of Dome Fuji Station, a research station operated by Japan

Located in the eastern part of Queen Maud Land, Dome Fuji is a zone of ice that characterizes it as a special place, with more than 720,000 years of history recorded in its ice. Japan was encouraged to install a scientific base, Dome Fuji Base, despite the complexity of its supply and maintenance.

DOME FUJI: 720,000 YEARS OF HISTORY IN ICE – Inuit WindSled (greenland.net)

WAP  2022, new Release 1.39 of WAP Awards and more

From the Homepage of WAP website, go to: http://www.waponline.it/wap-awards_download-rules/

You can find the 2022 edition (release 1.39)  of WAP-WACA & WAP-WADA Directories as well as Rules in French, English and Italian language to download for free and joining the hundreds of Hams thta have already got the presitigious WAP Awards!   In addition , you’ll get the IK6CAC  Dbase (Version 28, release 038), the dedicated software to manage your WAP Awards.

At  http://www.waponline.it/wap-antarctic-sub-antarctic-light-house-directory/ you can check or download the WAP Antarctic & Sub Antarctic Light House Directory

At WAP AWARD’s page http://www.waponline.it/wap-awards/ the WAP-WACA and WAP-WADA  issued , the ranking and more, all updated from January 1st 2022

TNX IK1GPG & IK1QFM

Polish Antarctic research station emerges from 43 years hibernation

A group of scientists have arrived at the only Polish research station on mainland Antarctica, which has been dormant since 1979 but will now be reactivated.

The team, headed by Marek Lewandowski and which includes Monika Kusiak, the first Polish woman to work at the station, arrived at the Dobrowolski Polar Station (pic aside) on Saturday morning Polish time, almost two months after setting off on their expedition.

They will now spend around six weeks reactivating the station in the Bunger Hills, also known as Bunger Oasis, and setting up equipment which will conduct seismic and magnetic measurements.

more info at:  https://notesfrompoland.com/2022/01/10/polish-antarctic-research-station-emerges-from-43-year-hibernation/

A.B. Dobrowolski Polar Station is an inactive Polish polar research station in Antarctica. It is located at the edge of the Algae Lake , Bunger Hills region, in the Wilkes Land and was originally constructed by the Soviet Union in 1956 and named Oazis (WAP RUS-NEW). The station was handed over by the Soviert Academy of Science to the Polish Academy of Science in January 1959. It was manned briefly by the Polish expedition, which carried out a number of studies, primarily in the fields of gravimetry and geomorphology. The station has not been used regularly since, due to the lack of funds and the high costs of air transport. The station has been visited periodically by Polish and other research teams.

A.B. Dobrowolski Polar Station (WAP POL-NEW) is one of the two Polish stations in Antarctica, the other (pic aside) being the Henry Arctowsky Polish Antarctic Station (WAP POL-Ø1) operating continuously since 1977, located on the Island of King George in the South Shetland archipelago, and the station that has not been used for about 40 years,  the A.B. Dobrowolski Polar Station (named after Polish geophysicist, meteorologist and explorer Antoni Boleslaw Dobrowolskin).

VP8/SQ1SGB Halley VI-a Base (WAP GBR-40)

Nice pileup last night on 7189 where Sebastian Gleich SQ1SGB was testing the new antenna just installed at Halley VI-a Base (WAP GBR-40).

VP8/SQ1SGB was entering with quite a good stable signal,   from S-5 toS-7. Another good one for WAP Awards.

Seba, did send a couple of pics of his multi band antenna well set among two pilons in the ice!
Check 40 mts from 22, 00 GMT and ahead.
Yesterday at 23,00 utc band was open to EU, Russia, North, Central and South America with quite a bit of pileup.

QSL for VP8/SQ1SGB has bo requested via EB7DX

TNX Seba VP8/SQ1SGB

Little Dome C (aka Epica Beyond Camp) WAP MNB-NEW?

Last minute info:
We have just received some information fom Danilo IAØ/IZ1KHY, who is actually in company with David FT4YM/P at “Dome C” Summer Camp.

We must reconsider the provisional WAP reference of Little Dome C just issuded, as “Dome C” Summer camp and “Little Dome C” , are two different sites: Danilo promised to send us  abit of description and pictures so that we can update WAP-WADA directory according to the most clear situation know.

According to GPS coordinates of Dome C, Antarctica. Latitude: -75.1000 Longitude: 123.3500  Little Dome C Field Camp (aka Epica Camp) is located at 75° 05’ 59” South, 123° 20’ 59” East on the Antarctic Plateau at about 40 km from Concordia station (WAP MNB-Ø3).

The European Project for Ice Coring in Antarctica (EPICA) was set out to provide the longest ice-core climate record yet, by drilling a core from 3,270 m thick ice at a site known as “Little Dome C” in East Antarctica.
Pic on the left show David Brunet at Little Dome C

On this site, David Brunet F4FKT, has been active the first time on Jan. 6th 2022 as FT4YM/p after having been QRV in the past weeks from Dome C Summer Camp (WAP MNB-NEW) near Concordia Station (WAP MNB-Ø3)

At the light of this great and not easy activation (David is using a dipole and 100W), a brand new WAP reference number will be given as soom as we have more details about the site ,


To be honest, we have to thank immensely  our friend Mehdi F5PFP for his great job to organize skeds with David and allow us to load a New Antarctic site on our log. Our congrats to David for his patience and determination in being  on the air  according to regular skeds!
              Pic aside show the dipole used by David at Dome C Summer camp

A bit of information about Little Dome C:

The first ice core drilling campaign of Beyond Epica-Oldest Ice is starting in Antarctica at the Little Dome C site. The aim of the project is to go back to 1.5 million years in time, by sampling and analysing the deep ice, which will reveal invaluable information on temperature and on the concentration of greenhouse gases in the past atmosphere. This project represents an unprecedented effort in paleoclimatology.

The project, is funded by the European Commission with 11 million euros and involves twelve European and non-European international research institutes and will benefit from synergies with the activities at the Italian-French Concordia Station managed by the French Polar Institute Paul-Émile Victor (IPEV) and the Italian National Antarctic Programme (PNRA) activities, including ENEA in charge for the logistics.

Whatch the Beyond EPICA official teaser

The actual campaign, at Little Dome C will last until January 2022, on an area of 10 km2, at  40 km from the Italian-French Concordia Station, on the East Antarctic plateau,  one of the most extreme places on the Earth.

QSL for FT4YM/p have to be requested direct to F5PFP

The first woman of colour to complete a solo unsupported trek to the South Pole

Indian origin British Sikh army officer Harpreet Chandi, a 32 years old,  has become the first woman of color to complete a solo expedition to the South Pole.

Chandi began her expedition on November 7, 2021, flying to Chile and then embarking from Antarctica’s Hercules Inlet. Along the way, she hauled a sled weighing 90 kilograms (nearly 200 pounds) holding kit, fuel and food to last for roughly 45 days.

Chandi, who adopted the nickname “Polar Preet” for her blog and fundraising efforts, spent two and a half years preparing for the grueling expedition.

She underwent crevasse training in the French Alps, trekked across Iceland’s Langjökull Glacier and endured 27 days on the ice cap in Greenland — not to mention the months she spent dragging a heavy tire behind her back home in England, to simulate pulling a sled.

Preet Chandi completed the 700 mile trek in 40 days.

Read more at: British Sikh Army officer makes history with solo climb to South Pole : The Tribune India