6 November, 1997

6 November 97


Condition II McMurdo Station

Condition I all other locations.

REGIONAL WEATHER SUMMARY...A low pressure system over the southern Ross Sea is moving slowly north. Clouds and snow will gradually clear after midnight as the low responsible for all this weather moves east. Blowing snow will continue into Friday morning but ease off as the winds do.

TODAY..Mostly cloudy with blowing snow.

Visibility: 1/8 to 1 mile in blowing snow becoming unrestricted by noon. Wind (knots): Southeast 20 to 25 gusting to 40 becoming easterly 10 to 20 knots.

High -08C/+18F. Lowest Wind-chill -33C/-27F.

TONIGHT...Mostly cloudy.

Visibility: Unrestricted.

Wind (knots): Northeast 10 to 15.

Temperature -13C/+09F. Lowest Wind-chill -34C/-30F.

FRIDAY...artly cloudy. Blowing snow ending near midday.

Visibility: 1/2 to 2 miles becoming unrestricted by midday.

Wind (knots): Northeast 15 gusting to 25.

High -12C/+10F. Lowest Wind-chill -35C/-32F.


High: -11C. Low: -16C


Next sunrise in February, 1998

YESTERDAY'S EXTREMES: 05 November, 1997

Maximum Temperature: -08C/+18F

Minimum Temperature: -10C/+14 F

Peak Wind: 56 Knots

Lowest wind chill: -36C/-33F

This morning things still looked pretty bad making this the third day of this storm. It was supposed to have cleared up by noon but it hung around all day. All field activities at McMurdo have ground to a halt for the past 3 days and people are getting edgy. There have been no flights out of McMurdo for almost a week and many were scheduled to return home but haven't. They have been trying for 2 1/2 weeks to open up the South Pole Station but the weather there has been too cold to bring the aircraft in. So many South Pole people have been stranded in McMurdo waiting for the right conditions to occur that no more have been allowed to come. Some have been in Christchurch, New Zealand for over two weeks just waiting to come to McMurdo Station. The town is filled to capacity with scientists and workers anxious to open the field camps and relieve the staff at the South Pole. There have been no flights to the South Pole since last February and the people who have spent the winter there are more than anxious to return to their families. Last week an attempt was made but the aircraft spent almost two hours circling the pole before being called back to McMurdo.

I finally was able to do some science after quite a layoff. I ran two experiments. One was a determination of the respiration rate of starfish tube feet at minus 1.4 degrees C. and the other was to determine the protein concentrations in the same samples. I therefore have both protein and respiration measurements on the same set of samples at the temperature of the water they live in. Tomorrow I hope to repeat this experiment at another temperature. If things go well I will continue to determine protein and respiration rate each day at successively higher temperatures.

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