Well just about everything that could go wrong did go wrong today. Of all days to lose the MET data, and then suddenly all the radios disappeared off the console system and after sorting out these two things I discovered the HF radios were not working. Thankfully after the third flight a radio operator flew in to take over flight SAR watch and I could go and investigate the HF radio problem.
I ended up finding three faults with the system. It was working perfect until we were told to turn off one of the 1kW HPA’s to save power. Doing this killed the battery charger and the node controller gradually flattened the backup battery until the node controller crashed. This must have caused noise on the node controller Ethernet port and then the switch closed down its corresponding port. On top of this, one of the USB extender cables had come loose. I fixed up the USB cable and then went back to the workshop and grabbed a high current power supply to quickly charge up the battery and then I opened the port on the switch and all was good again.
By now I had missed smoko and lunch so I went back to my room to chip away on my annual report and I ended up falling asleep for an hour, waking up just in time for dinner. I was up late last night researching hot water systems. The bar is closed from now on so I might have an early night tonight. (Yeah right) The place is crawling with strangers now and the whole dynamics have changed, but at least we have apples, oranges and bruised pears for the first time in over a year. There are lots of very very serious and important people everywhere.......NOT. Helicopters seem to attract these types of people, even a couple of our guys have suddenly changed the way they talk and act. I have never seen that before working offshore, but Antarctica is swarming with them.