Arctic / Antarctic / Alpine

Away Team Update: DLR TRIPLE-IceCraft Expedition To Antarctica Part 3

By Keith Cowing
Status Report
March 5, 2023
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Away Team Update: DLR TRIPLE-IceCraft Expedition To Antarctica Part 3
View of our container from Neumayer Station, the antenna dome (radome) and the Polar 5 aircraft Credit: DLR/RWTH Aachen/Dirk Heinen

The seventh day of our Antarctic expedition to test the TRIPLE-IceCraft melting probe begins for me and all the new arrivals in our segregated living area: our joint COVID-19 test is scheduled with the station doctor and manager.

Thankfully, all new arrivals have tested negative! The isolation and mask-wearing are over! In the evening, the whole group gathers to get acquainted with the existing crew of Neumayer III.

Our working day starts with a short walk to the container housing the TRIPLE-IceCraft melting probe. Once there, we remove the snow drifts from the previous day’s storm. Thankfully, the tight partition walls of our container prevented any snow from entering. We start by opening the melting probe to install the scientific payloads, consisting of a camera module and an anterior sonar system. To do so, we must first dismantle the front module of the probe.

The camera module was transported by air freight inside a box together with a transport logger. Once the camera module is taken out of the box, the data from the logger is read out. From a series of functional tests of the three cameras, the associated data systems and lighting, we can see that the module has survived the transport undamaged, despite some strong shocks and vibrations. Everything works, and the images are transmitted in real time to our monitoring software.

As bad weather is predicted again for tomorrow, we lock up and stow away everything at the end of the day.

Technical drawing of TRIPLE-IceCraft

Full blog entry at DLR


Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA Space Station Payload manager/space biologist, Away Teams, Journalist, Lapsed climber, Synaesthete, Na’Vi-Jedi-Freman-Buddhist-mix, ASL, Devon Island and Everest Base Camp veteran, (he/him) 🖖🏻