Broadband fun and games

In addition to the Reftek geophones we also installed three (not four) broadband seismometers. These are the type of seismometers that are usually used to detect earthquakes and have had limited use on the ice. The installation of these instruments is a little more involved as they need to be kept as level as possible and ideally protected from most of the glacier melt. For this concrete based pvc tubes were made to house the instruments. However, the seismometers were shipped straight from the Uk to Antarctica and the tubes were constructed in Hobart. Somewhere along the line a error was made in the dimensions and when we tired out the tubes we found that they were about 15 cm too short! After discussing the possibility of hacking out some of the concrete and considering this could be the end of the broadband seismometer deployment, Hannes mentioned the problem to some guys from the workshop and they said to leave it with them….. two days later, without removing any concrete at all they had managed to extend the tubes and even silicone and heat-shrink them so that they were still waterproof! One thing that I am constantly blown away by here is the not only the willingness but pleasure most people take in helping each other out. There are so many amazingly skilled and talented people and all are happy to help out in anyway they can. Our work on the glacier was certainly saved numerous times by the skill and innovation of so many of these people.

As soon as there’s a big drill involved everyone wants a go!
The seismometer located inside it’s newly extended, waterproof tube.
Then things started to melt!
Laptops and bright white ice don’t mix – she’s in there somewhere.
While everybody else patiently waits for the scientist!

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