On the value of communications

Staying in touch is very important, and it is hard to over-emphasize how much we rely upon the modern technology when working over these huge geographic areas. People need to know about the schedules, delays, arrivals and plans, forecasts and instrument issues, and all of this is being communicated via the internet and cell phones. … Read more

Part five: Hobart, Tasmania

We were asked by people not to tell anyone that Tasmania is nice, so we will not. Please don’t read any further. We are getting used to the fact that for some reason on this trip the instruments are playing more practical jokes on us than usual. Two more issues surfaced today, providing for a … Read more

Over the Southern Ocean to Hobart, Tasmania

Volcanic ash never really cooperated and caused a great deal of grief when we were trying to juggle a decision between major schedule changes and missing the scientific objectives for which we came here in the first place vs. the risk of muti-million dollar damage to the aircraft engines. Such choices are not easy to … Read more

Winter and tears in Christchurch

It is winter in Christchurch. The sky is gray and every once in a while it rains, and in the second half of the day a few blotches of blue sky appeared all of a sudden, and just as quickly disappeared as if worried to be caught. Then the rain started again. This went on … Read more

Willowbank, Christchurch

This was one beautiful day in Christchurch. Sunny and warm, it was apparently a great contrast to the preceding weeks of overcast and rainy weather. As it turns out the weather changed as we arrived and taxied to a stop, splashing the puddles on the ramp with the landing gear tires. We brought the good … Read more