2016-2017 Science Planning Summaries
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2016-2017 USAP Field Season
Staffed Field Camps

A total of seven field camps will have resident staff to provide logistical and operational assistance to McMurdo and vessel-based researchers.

Scientist Aneliya Sakaeva Collects Samples in the Dry Valleys

Dry Valleys

50 Nautical Miles From McMurdo Station

77.30°S, 162°E

Each year, Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) grantees and other groups conduct research in the Dry Valleys. Two resident staff will operate the main base camp at Lake Hoare and the semi-permanent camps at Lake Fryxell, F-6, and Lake Bonney. Science project teams will erect small tent camps on Lake Meirs, Lake Vanda, near Mount Crean, and in the Beacon and Wright Valleys.

Siple Dome

507 Nautical Miles From McMurdo Station

81.39°S, 149.04°W

This camp serves as a fueling point for aircraft operating between McMurdo Station and West Antarctica or South Pole. Two resident staff will provide daily weather observations and maintain the camp. Siple Dome will also house and feed Kenn Borek Air (KBA) crews as needed. This season, the team will support the science operations of Weins (G-089-M).

Portable Shelters at the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) Divide Field Camp

WAIS Divide Field Camp

891 Nautical Miles From McMurdo Station

79.46°S, 112.08°W

The WAIS Divide field camp with 15 resident staff will support five science groups working through the site, including Twin Otter missions for Polenet (G-079-M) and Polenet (G-079-M), the deployment of Stone (I-277-M) to the Pirrit Hills, and opening of the arch for borehole logging by Pettit (I-166-M). The West Antarctic Support Traverse and Camping teams will also work through WAIS Divide as they move drill equipment, fuel and cargo to the Pirrit Hills in support of Stone.

Shackleton Camp

459 Nautical Miles From McMurdo Station

85.08°S, 175.38°W

Now in the second of three field seasons of Shackleton camp, a staff of 6 will continue to receive cargo and fuel deliveries from LC-130s to support the science groups working in and around of the mountains over the next two austral summers. The six science groups supported through Shackleton this season include Cottle (G-076-M), ANSMET Harvey (G-058-M), Mukhopadhyay (G-438-M), Taylor (G-135-M), Stone (I-186-M) and Bromley (I-177-M).

A Solar Panel Provides Electricity for the Mount Erebus Field Camp

Mount Erebus

22 Nautical Miles From McMurdo Station

77.30°S, 167.08°E

Lower Erebus has a large population this summer and will once again be staffed by an ASC camp supervisor. Groups supported through Fang Glacier Acclimatization camp and Lower Erebus Hut include MEVO Kyle (G-081-M), Fischer (G-411-M), Carroll (W-487-M), Wicks (W-483-M), and ASC Environmental to continue the clean-up of the Upper Erebus Hut debris.

Groom Team

1,117 Nautical Miles From McMurdo Station

83.6°S, 40.54°W (GRIPS)

85.04°S, 167.10°E (Mill Glacier)

77.13°S, 123.30°E (AGO5)

A team of three will deploy through McMurdo Station to various locations with the same mission, to create a skiway to allow for the necessary airframe to land. Locations and projects supported this season include Ross Ice Shelf Yesterday camp for Wiens (G-089-M), Mill Glacier in combination with ASC Environmental for clean-up retro effort, GRIPS via South Pole for the payload recovery, and AGO 5 with Gerrard (A-112-M/S).


47 Nautical Miles From McMurdo Station

78.36°S, 166.39°E

The Rapid Access Ice Drill (RAID) will conduct testing of their drill this season on the backside of Minna Bluff. A traverse team of five will make the trip from McMurdo, along a route proven during the 2015-16 season, hauling drill equipment and fuel. A camp staff of two will meet them via helicopter to establish the camp supporting a population near 20, including PI John Goodge (D-551-M) and a team of Drilling, Observation and Sampling of the Earth’s Continental Crust (DOSEC) drillers.