Thursday, October 13, 2005
posted 10/13/2005 07:11:00 PM UTC+12, McMurdo Local Time

Work day #2

Another busy day! After our morning meeting where we discussed plans for the day and such, we got started with a transfer to move fuel to the power plant and galley tanks. It's a transfer from one of our bulk tanks (2.2 million gallon capacity,) so we got to go for a nice walk to a pass above town and walk the line all the way from there to the far end of town setting valves and such, which was a nice way to learn where things are in town. Right after we had the transfer setup, I had to split off and go to Piston (Pisten? will check spelling soon) Bully training. Pisten Bully's are nifty tracked vehicles that can have either a passenger compartment or flat bed on the back. The fuels department has one with a passenger compartment that gets used for general stuff moving and especially for rolling up long stretches of flexible hose on occasion. Will post pictures of one soon. Really neat little vehicles; they have some kind of continuously variable transmission, diesel engines, really wide treads, and nice plush interiors with functional heaters! After an hour or two of training it was time for lunch, then off to the fuels barn to help out with prepping a big fuel bladder (want to say 10,000 gallons, but don't remember exactly) that's going to be sent out to a field camp in a few days. Then, it was time to get trained on fuel testing, which was also interesting and I ended up helping out with teaching a little (how to use some of the basic lab equipment properly.) We have a fun little machine that tests the flash point of fuel, will have to get a little video clip of it working posted here somehow. After fuels training, I went for a much more in-depth tour of the barn to learn where all the different types of parts, tools, and fittings were, and then it was time to call it a day. Learned lots of practical stuff today, and actually got to help out with some useful stuff with the power plant transfer and the bladder! Tomorrow, I leave in the morning for 'happy camper school' which is a basic Antarctic survival course where we'll go out on the sea ice and set up a camp, then spend the night in it. Should get back in time on Sunday to go to a big meeting, then off to a fuelie party at "Hut 10," which is basically a little house that people can check out for a day at a time for such events. So, that's probably all that'll get posted here for the next several days as I'll be out and then very busy.

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