Researchers in Antarctic Lose Power for 19 Hours

Researchers in Antarctic Lose Power for 19 Hours

In Antarctica, British researchers experienced a power outage of 19 hours and that too, at record freezing temperatures. They are living on an ice shelf but said that they are in good spirits.

They are 13 staff members from the British Antarctic Survey (BAS) and are dealing with a serious operational defect since the end of last month at the Halley Research Station.

On the Brunt Ice Shelf, the temperature has been close to -55.4 C, which has made it extremely difficult to live for the team. The reason of the power cut is not yet known.

Anthony Lister, electrical and renewable energy engineer, is one among the people at the station who has been keeping the world updated with their situation through his blog and tweets.

He said that the team is drinking lot of tea to stay warm. He also informed that they are all healthy and also make sure the station is in good order.

"Contingency plans for alternative accommodation on site are in place and ancillary buildings are being made ready in case of a further power-down", said BAS.

They said that their urgent priority is to ensure that the wintering team is safe and in order. They also added that all the research has been halted other than meteorological observations.

The BAS website says that the medical facilities at Halley include a full-time doctor and a surgery with emergency facilities at the station. All power was lost to the Antarctic research station including heating for 19 hours on July 30.

BAS says that the power and some heating have been restored back along with some other important services, but the staff officials have to live and work in very difficult conditions.

The winter research at the Halley station includes monitoring of ozone, meteorological monitoring and collection of data for international research programmes.


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