South Pole Diaries 1998/99



Tuesday 26th January

From Daniel Marlay.....

Mike Burton has impressed upon me that it is my responsibility to continue the epic South Pole Diary now that I am the sole UNSW representative down here.

Mike got away early this morning (10:00am) with the DVs and all the other passengers who had been delayed with them. That was the first time that I've ever seen a Herc with its propellors stationary down here. On other incidental news, Peter Hillary has finally arrived here at the pole. He and his team spent the latter half of the afternoon walking from the point at which they were first spotted, across to the pole. They have just delivered a mildly interesting (pole expeditions are getting a bit ho-hum these days) talk about there trek over here. They don't seem to disappointed at being possibly the slowest team ever to reach the South Pole.

On the AASTO front, I spent the day finishing off the various spreadsheets and documentation that I've been working on. I'm finding out about getting the computer back and whether we will require an excess baggage allowance. I'll know on that front fairly soon.

I have been checking the readings coming back from the wind vane, and have ascertained that the readings from our windvane are within a few degrees and less than a meter a second of the station wind vane. Looks like that worked well. Is there some way of checking the data that is being monitored by the housekeeping software? I tried running DCUMON on the laptop, but it don't seem to work. Also Ron Rainbow did enquire when he was here as to whether that laptop was ours (the old Toshiba). I informed him that it was (given that we carted it down here this year). Did I inform correctly?

Bob Lowenstein (SP?) has started to work on a script that will automatically check the Dallas Semiconductor temperature sensors every hour or so to see whether the temperature is dropping or not. This script should hopefully provide the winterovers with some warning as to whether the TEG is working or not. They are concerned that a heater with a thermostat will operate above the 0 degrees C point. If it does this and the burners go out, then the propane won't automatically shut off, and you have the makings of a nice black mark surrounded by some pretty yellow poles. The Orbcomm has not been successful yet and so I have packed it away, ready for the trip home.

Well I think that just about covers today's business.

Daniel Marlay



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