University of Wisconsin-Madison

Week 48 at the Pole

NSF/D. Larsen
NSF/D. Larsen

The drill in the center of this photo was designed for the Askaryan Radio Array (ARA), a neutrino detector much like the IceCube Neutrino Observatory. But while IceCube monitors the ice for flashes of radiation created in a neutrino interaction, ARA is designed to use radio waves to detect ultra-high-energy neutrinos.

That’s IceCube winterover Ian Rees (facing) near the drill while it’s being prepared to access a rod well, which is a deep cavity used to melt ice for drinking water. Rod wells are named after Paul Rodriguez, an Army engineer who developed them while at Camp Century in Greenland in the early 1960s. Tidbit: the first Camp Century contingent to remain during the winter (not as cold as the South Pole but cold nonetheless) had a commander whose motto was “Another day in which to excel!”—excellent words to live by.