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Polar Radar for Ice Sheet Measurements

   
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  Monday, July 25, 2005

The day started out with some of the team preparing equipment for our last radar measurements of the field season. One radar system was placed on a Nansen sled pulled by a snowmobile, and a radar receiver system was loaded on a second Nansen sled, also pulled by a snowmobile. Other team members looked at data previously collected, and our data sets look exceptionally good. The camp is buzzing with people preparing for the flights coming in this week by grooming the ski-way, getting packing equipment, and getting cargo piled on pallets. There are 5 flights scheduled this week, two on Tuesday, one on Wednesday, and two on Thursday. People will be leaving on each of these days, with a few new people coming into the camp. There is one large item leaving today – the RAMAS laboratory. This is a modified shipping container that is returning to Bremen University in Germany. After flying to Kangerlussuaq, the RAMAS container will go by ship to Germany.

For lunch we had Philly cheese steak sandwiches (a vegetarian substitute was also available), fresh raspberries, cottage cheese, rice, and salad. Throughout the afternoon, Kirby and Guna began to take apart the large SAR radar antenna sleds for shipping, and work continued on setting up the radars on Nansen sleds. We were ready to begin measurement around 4 p.m. These measurements would be bistatic radar measurements, with the transmitter and received separated by distances ranging from hundreds of meters to a few kilometers. Pannir and Tim took the transmitter sled, and David and Torry took the receiver sled. We started taking measurements within 200 m of each other, than moved apart at 400 m intervals taking measurements at each interval. At first we were within sight of each other, but a combination of distance and ice fog rolling in resulted in losing sight of each other quickly. We had hand-held radios to coordinate the moves and the measurements. We completed the bistatic measurements around 6 p.m. and watched a “fogbow” as we drove back to Summit camp. A fogbow is similar to a rainbow, but is white and not colored. It is caused by ice crystals in the air.

By dinner, Kirby and Guna had the SAR antenna sleds down to their bases. Dinner consisted of Parmesan chicken, roasted potatoes, maple carrots, green goddess casseroles, and salad. At dinner we noticed two people we hadn’t seen in camp during the two weeks we had been here. Since no flights had come in, the only other option for getting to camp was by foot. These two gentlemen were Swedish cross country skiers who were skiing from the southern tip of Greenland to the northern tip pulling all of their equipment in sleds. They had dinner with us and set up their tent in the Summit tent city. Our group volunteered to give a science lecture tonight and it was very much appreciated by the camp. After our presentation, the Swiss team gave a presentation on the atmospheric science measurements they are making.

NOTE: This was entire journal entry, not just page 1.

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