Every morning, I take a ~20 minute shuttle to get to work.
We work in a RAC tent…
…located on Williams Field (an airfield) so that we have easier access to load and unload our equipment.
Our RAC tent is split into two main rooms: the front room is our office space and the back room is our lab space.
Setting up the tent itself was an entire project. My intention was to upload a stimulating time-lapse of the process, but unfortunately McMurdo’s connection is quite stubborn.
The office is where all the data archiving, QC’ing and processing occurs, to ensure that each flight of data is sound and secure. The lab space contains all the hardware that will be installed in the plane.
Obtaining a grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) was a hard-fought process, and given the high frequency of flight cancellations due to gnarly weather and/or mechanical issues, we use our time on the ice as efficiently as possible. Each opportunity to fly is critical, the data we collect from each flight precious. After each flight – the goal is to fly twice a day – the data is carefully archived and copied to several safe locations. The data is then QC’ed. Lines, or even segments of lines for flights are closely examined so that we can be confident that our surveys are producing good, usable data.
These processes can take many hours, since our survey collects data using a variety of instruments. For details on methods and instrumentation, check the blog soon!