Feb 8th, 2018
The team lands in Cape Town
The science portion of the team has left Antarctica and successfully landed in Cape Town, South Africa. Some of the logistic members of the team are still in Antarctica but are slated to leave within the next few weeks, along with most of the samples. We're overjoyed to welcome everyone home safely!
Feb 3rd, 2018
Almost Time to Return!
The expedition has come out of the deep field and returned to SANAE IV station which is run by the South Africans. Thus far, they have been able to take 71 samples many of them along elevation profiles from local high points on the mountains (nunataks) to the current ice surface, and many of them of bedrock and of boulders on the bedrock. They expect to be able to sample a few more in the coming days. Their planned departure from Antarctica is on February 8, tentative. The rock samples will most likely be transported to either Purdue University and/or Glasgow University for target preparation: this will take at least a year (and most probably longer for most samples).
Jan 13th, 2018
Team Member Switch
The planned switch between team members Jon Harbor and Derek Fabel was successful. The switch occurred slightly early due to impending weather conditions.
We are wishing Derek good luck with the rest of the team in the field and wishing Jon safe travels home!
Dec 31st, 2017
Work Begins in SANAE IV
The team arrived at the South African research station (SANAE IV) safely. See Jon Harbor's narrative of their arrival.
Dec 26th, 2017
Next Step: SANAE!
Dec 26th: Today the sea ice conditions were good enough to allow all of our heavy equipment to be offloaded from the S.A. Agulhas II to the ice shelf. The ice shelf surface is about 40m above the ship’s deck, so everything has to be lifted up by the crane. Our logistics team is unpacking the equipment, testing it, and getting everything ready for us to be able to travel and camp safely on the ice. Our next step is to travel over the ice shelf to the edge of the ice sheet, and then on to SANAE (the South African research station).
On the 24th we had our first helicopter-based reconnaissance of nunataks (mountains that stick up through the ice sheet) in the northern part of our field area. We are excited about visiting some of these sites we saw to take samples in the near future.
Dec 24th, 2017
Christmas Eve on Agulhas II
The MAGIC-DML team is still on the S.A. Agulhas II and wrapping up planning for sampling sites. Due to a change in wind pushing the sea ice against the ice shelf, unloading of their cargo from the ship has been delayed until the winds change. Additionally, they are waiting on clear weather for the use of the helicopters for reconnaissance. The team is making the most of the extra time by mapping, writing, and even seeing a few penguins! Everyone is in good spirits and eager to get back on the ice, after their Christmas gift exchange of course!