Help Explore Lake Untersee, Antarctica
You can help fund projects like the 2015 Antarctic Expedition to Lake Untersee, Antarctica.
I am the senior scientist for this project and will be leading the expedition's return to Lake Untersee for a another field season of research in the mountains of Queen Maud Land, Antarctica. My team and I will depart in late October for Antarctica, and if weather conditions permit, we will arrive at Novolazarevskaya Station on or about November 4th.
Soon after our arrival in Antarctica we must begin assembling and organizing all of the things we will require while in the field. Once we depart Novolazareskya Station we will be on our own, without resupply or additional support for the next 6-8 weeks. We must ensure that we have all of our camping and diving gear required to support our work, and that our science equipment is in good working order. Our three snowmobiles and sleds must be prepared and personal gear packed for the traverse inland across the blue-ice to Untersee Oasis where we will set up our camp. Once we are onsite at Lake Untersee it's imperative to get the camp setup - because of the harsh and unforgiving climate our first job is to make sure we have a warm, safe place to live, with multiple options in the event that we lose tents due to strong winds, which can (and have) reached 110 mph at times. Once our camp is established we begin making the holes through the 3.5 meter thick ice - small ones for lowering instruments and sampling water, and larger ones for diving and for the Seabotix LBV300 and REMUS100 AUV that we will use to investigate the lake. At that point we will begin six to eight weeks of intensive studies focussed on the physics, chemistry and biology of the lake, in a very, very harsh and demanding environment.
Following the work at Lake Untersee, our team returns to Cape Town, South Africa in late December and afterwards, we return home with the data and samples we collected and begin the process of analyzing these samples and reducing the data for publication in the scientific literature, and sharing the results with the public.
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