Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Wednesday 8th January 2014

The ARPANSA laboratory has been over heating again this week due to the strong radiant heat caused by the zero wind and cloudless sky. It seems crazy to have a cooling problem in Antarctica but some of the other buildings are struggling to cope as well and as I type this I have a fan going on my bench to keep me cool. I have tried ducting bleed air over the detectors to move the dead air in the end of the building where the detectors are located and we’ll have to wait and see if this is effective or not. I am now thinking as a permanent solution would be to install a T-valve on the main air pump to direct all air either outside in winter or ducted to the detectors during summer as well as the addition of a H-cowl to remove the hot air during summer.

So far our hydroponic garden has produced 168kg beating last year’s total of 150kg and we still have a few more weeks to go. Yesterday both the Akademik Shokalskiy and the Xue Long exited the pack ice as it broke up around them and the ironic thing is now the Akademik Shokalskiy will be back in port in New Zealand before their passengers who are still stuck on the Aurora Australis doing the resupply at Casey. You have to ask the question, was it really an emergency? And what are these non sea ice rated vessels doing down here in the first place? I guess the courts will be fighting this one out for a few years to come.

Fuel tank cleaning is coming along well without incident and most of the tanks a relatively clean.

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