Clcik the "Media" tab to see the YouTube video!
We were on the list to fly out (on an airplane called a "Twin Otter") to two Automatic Weather Station (AWS) sites that are located about 500 miles (800 km) to the "Grid West" of here. But our flight was canceled due to weather. That means I have time to write a journal! We are also working on checking the wiring, memory, data loggers and transmitting capacity of the AWS equipment that we will be working with in the coming weeks.
Weather Condition System
The weather here in Antarctica is categorized by the numbers 1, 2 and 3. The definitions are listed below. Today is Condition 1 and 2 here in places. That means that the weather is...NASTY. It is snowing and there is a lot of blowing snow and the wind is gusting to 35 knots (according to the McMurdo weather station). Take a look at the YouTube video to see the difference between a nice day and a "Condition 2" day. Take a look at the definitions. It is considered a "good" day as long as winds less than 48 knots, visibility greater than or equal to ¼ mile, and wind chill temperatures are warmer than -75°F. Sounds like a nice weather day...right?
Severe Weather Condition I
Severe weather is in progress. All personnel must remain in buildings or the nearest shelter. Winds greater than 55 knots sustained for one minute, or visibility less than 100 feet sustained for one minute, or wind chill greater than -100°F sustained for one minute.
Severe Weather Condition II
Restricted pedestrian traffic only between buildings is allowed. Vehicular travel is only allowed in radio equipped, enclosed vehicles, and check out with the Firehouse. Winds 48 to 55 knots sustained for one minute, or visibility less than ¼ mile, but greater than or equal to 100 feet sustained for one minute, or wind chill -75°F to -100°F sustained for one minute.
Weather Condition III
Unrestricted travel and activity are allowed. Winds less than 48 knots, and visibility greater than or equal to ¼ mile, and wind chill temperature warmer than -75°F.