University of Wisconsin-Madison

Week 42 at the Pole

NSF/I. Rees
NSF/I. Rees

For a place that receives so little precipitation, there’s an awful lot of snow around. So much snow that bulldozers are sometimes enlisted to move it out of the way, as shown here in front of this parked Basler jet. Planes can get stuck at the South Pole for days on end due to bad weather. And if high winds are part of that bad weather, then snow accumulation can be a problem. The image below shows an expanse of snow, with a wall formed by drifting around the “beer can,” which is the name given to the cylindrical, metal tower attached to the main station.

NSF/D. Larsen
NSF/D. Larsen