Travel Log: December 14th, 2000

Dateline: 6:23 AM December 14, 2000
South Pole

Temperature: -29.2°C, -20.4°F
Wind: 023 at 10.4 knots
Windchill: -46.8°C, -52.3°F
Barometer: 695.8 mbar
Physio Altitude: 10037 ft

Randy writes:

Well the skies have cleared some but they still are not blue. This is very uncommon weather due to moisture that came in from the Weddell Sea. Yesterday no flights landed even though two flew right overhead. There just wasn't enough visibility to safely land them. This morning looks better though, as I can even see the end of the runway which is pretty far away.

Patricia and I both spent the day out in the Dark Sector working with CARA people. I had the early shift getting in around 6AM and Patricia the late staying until 4am. There is a lot of action going on to film inside so it is a good time to be here even if the weather is weird. All the ACBAR cargo came in late Tuesday evening and so Bill Holzapfel and Co. have been happily working away. ACBAR is a new detector for the Viper telescope that will look at the Cosmic Microwave Background and the SZ effect. Meanwhile out in the Polar Haven, a temporary canvas structure, Jeff Peterson and a host of others are working on the Viper telescope itself. They are recabling it, realigning the optics, etc. Viper was going to be lifted back on to its tower yesterday but the cranes were needed elsewhere. This was not terrible as it provided more time to work on the telescope in the nice warm protected polar haven rather than out in the cold.

Go on to the
next day...