Dear Friends and Colleagues, A ‘lidar marathon’ record, a lot of penguins, and gorgeous Antarctic scenery with so much open water — these are the unforgettable aspects of our Antarctic journey! Flying back home today my heart is still filled with the Antarctic beauty and the fantastic science we can do there!… Read More


The definitive Antarctic experience of Brendan Roberts, replete with photos, in all its excruciating detail. I left Christchurch for Antarctica on December 1st, 2011. The shuttle bus pulled onto the tarmac and right up to the giant grey C-17. I was the first off the shuttle bus and the first to the steps into the… Read More


Although my advisor, Dr. Chu, is quite happy with the data collected in March, it is my obligation to get enough data. I am determined to collect lidar data as much as possible. At the beginning of April, I thought the weather would be better and better, but the fact is that it was worse… Read More


Open water surrounding the Ross Island generated so many clouds. We ran into a few times of conditions II. In March, there was not even a single day with continuous 24 hours of clear skies. My tries to run the lidar were frustrated by the cloudy sky and quick weather change. But eventually I managed… Read More


By mid-February 2011, I was “left” alone and became the sole operator for our Fe Boltzmann lidar through the first winter season at McMurdo. What a wonderful and big family we had in the summer at McMurdo! I really enjoyed working with my professors and colleagues. By January 22, 2011, my advisor, Prof. Xinzhao Chu,… Read More


During the night of January 21-22, 2011 — the night I finally flew out of the ice — we witnessed a live “show” of an Adelie penguin versus a Weddell seal at the Hut Point on Ross Island in Antarctica. I also photographed four emperor penguins standing beside the runway to Pegasus International Airport. The… Read More


Patience, creativity, and persistence finally paid off! The A-130 lidar team successfully resolved the lidar EMI (electro-magnetic interference) issue at Arrival Heights in the 9th week at Antarctica. Nice weather has returned to McMurdo so the team is happily running the lidar to collect data for our science goals. An icebreaker ship, Oden, finally made its… Read More


After the gorgeous weather around Christmas (maximum reaching about +5C with clear sky), McMurdo had overcast sky for nearly two weeks from December 28th, 2010 to the morning of January 9th, 2011. Since the lidar beam couldn’t penetrate such thick clouds, we took this time to optimize the lidar system, provide training opportunities to our… Read More