Week 44 at the Pole
Although timing and schedules are a bit different this year due to the pandemic, there is still a transition period for IceCube’s winterovers—as there is every year—in which the outgoing and the incoming winterovers overlap at the Pole. This way, the new winterovers have some time to settle in before the current winterovers depart. Last week, IceCube’s current winterovers, John and Yuya, officially completed a full year at the South Pole, and they’re still going. Their new replacements have not yet arrived, but they are on their way. In the meantime, the IceCube detector continues to be robust, with little action last week. The station crew have been packaging some of their personal belongings to be sent north, which must be done well in advance as the cargo will be taken back by the South Pole traverse. The crew also took some time to tour the ice tunnels, which connect the station to its water source. Below shows a view into one of the tunnels where a new rodwell will be when the current rodwell is used up.