23 January 2014

Just a quick blog post with links to a couple of videos I’ve shot while at our Tall Tower field camp.

The first is a video of the flight down to Antarctica from boarding the plane in Christchurch to stepping out into the bright sunlight and snow of Antarctica. You can find this video here.

The next video is from the stormiest day we experienced while at  our field camp. On this day the wind was blowing at 20 to 25 mph with a temperature hovering near 20 degrees F. In the video you can see snow blowing across the surface. This blowing snow has created large drifts, several feet tall and tens of feet long, around all of our tents.

The final video shows us flying our SUMO (Small Unmanned Meteorological Observer) UAV. The plane is launched by hand and lands on its belly.

During the SUMO flights I control the plane during takeoff and landing with a model airplane remote control. Other than during takeoff and landing the plane flies a pre-programmed flight plan. Melissa has been handling the pre-programmed portion of the flight by watching the plane’s progress on a laptop computer. From this computer she can see the current weather conditions experienced by the plane, where it is relative to the pre-programmed flight plan, and can instruct the plane to alter its flight plan as needed.

Melissa watching the progress of a SUMO flight on a laptop computer.

In another blog post I’ll give you more details about our SUMO flights and the research we are doing with these planes.

Thanks for reading.