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Ghost Base: Running on Its Own...

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'Ghost Base' Perched on a Growing Ice Chasm in Antarctica Is Running on Its Own:

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A remote science station in Antarctica forced to close over the polar winter by a dangerous ice chasm is completely empty of human life — a ghost base of sorts. Even so, its vital science experiments keep on ticking.

It is the first time that important science experiments at the Halley Research Station on the Brunt Ice Shelf have been operated remotely, thanks to a high-tech electricity generator that will run continuously for nine months in the below-freezing conditions.

The generator and the science experiments that depend on it — including measurements of the ozone hole over Antarctica and global monitoring of lightning activity — passed the middle of the southern polar winter (complete darkness) a few days ago, on June 21. [Antarctica: The Ice-Covered Bottom of the World (Photos)]

That's already more than four months of continuous operation, including times when the temperature was more than minus 40 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 40 degrees Celsius), and the polar winds were blowing snow at up to 50 mph (80 km/h) , said Thomas Barningham, the project leader for the British Antarctic Survey (BAS).

"That is a significant milestone for us, so we are very pleased with the progress of the new power system," Barningham told Live Science. 

The Halley scientific research station has been operated by the BAS on the Brunt Ice Shelf since 1956, and rebuilt in the same location several times.

 

more at link........................

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