Field season 2008 – University of Copenhagen

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NEEM > Field diaries > Field season 2008

Field season 2008

The 2008 field season has been completed successfully

10 October 2008

The 2008 field season has been completed
All NEEM personnel has now left the camp. We start the work in Greenland again in May 2009.

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The floor where the Viessman cabins are to be placed was carefully levelled following Henry’s method.

11 August 2008

Leveling floors Levelling floors involves moving snow (as most other activities in camp)

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A Toyota break down stopped the radar measurements for the day

10 August 2008

Sad and happy picture from camp It turned out that a bearing was broken on the right back mattrax and the Toyota had to be placed on pallets and pulled 5 km back to camp.

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Saturday evening with an American Buffet.

09 August 2008

Flag line The Saturday meal was cooked by the Americans in camp and we all enjoyed it.

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Many of the projects are reaching the end

08 August 2008

Downstairs The season is reaching the end and in camp we can see the end of many of the major projects.

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Drill tower in place.

07 August 2008

Raising the tower The drill tower was placed today in the drill trench. The tower parts where attached with 80 bolts and the tower base was adjusted so the drill will be centered over the borehole

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Finishing Dome constructions 2008

06 August 2008

Skiing This is the last mayor construction in the dome this year.

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Finally the top windows are in place

05 August 2008

Top of the dome Finally the day came where we could place the top windows in the dome

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The most wonderful weather today

04 August 2008

Hallo to the fieldleader Today we had no wind, -3 C and sunshine so we used the opportunity to work as much as possible on the surface.

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Small projects finished

03 August 2008

Picture is coming Many of the long lasting activities like making stairs in the inclined trench and gluing rubber to the main dome are nearly finished.

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The last traces of the firn village are removed.

02 August 2008

Removing snow Todd’s tent was taken down at the air gas site and all bamboo poles NOT marking the boreholes to be kept where removed.

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97% solar eclipse at NEEM

01 August 2008

0.97 solar eclipse After a night only a few hours long for most camp personal we enjoyed watching a 97% solar eclipse at 07:30

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The big DV day.

31 July 2008

DV day Sad goodbyes to 10 friends from NEEM and a busy day guiding our 16 guests around at NEEM.

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The fight period with the DV visit is coming close and the day is a big cleaning day in the camp

30 July 2008

The camp with the black dome Just like at home – you clean before the guest arrive – the camp was busy cleaning

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The 3 ton heavy winch has been moved down in the drill trench

29 July 2008

The Winch We used the crane of the PistenBully as a contra weight so the winch would not slip from us and slide into the trench.

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The traverse is back at NEEM

28 July 2008

Traverse At 14:00 the whole camp greeted Anders and Sverrir welcome back to camp.

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Work continues in camp

27 July 2008

Digging A Sunday with digging in the trenches, construction of the core buffer, shelves in the dome, final drilling and gas pumping at the firn-gas village…

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Saturday evening and Bo's 30 year birthday

26 July 2008

Birthday The theme for Saturday night was celebration of Bo’s 30 year birthday. Carina and Bo prepared a most excellent Indonesian meal followed by ice cream cake with candles.

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The big snow removing day - and Laki found for the third time this year!

25 July 2008

Removing snow In the science trench the drift at the closed inclined entrance is moved - unfortunately removing the cute penguin cut the day before by Valerie

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The cooks snowmelter and sodamachine is installed

24 July 2008

Snowmelter Camp life went back to normal after a successful flight day yesterday. In the dome a cooks snowmelter was installed with improvised material.

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Flight day with goodbyes and welcomes

23 July 2008

New arrivals The Skier arrives in camp at 08:10 with Thomas St, Trine, Jens Peter, Laurin and Ramon.

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The day is spiced with preparations for the flight the next day, Wednesday

22 July 2008

NGRIP traverse Besides from the normal work in camp (firn-gas program, ice core processing, drill trench preparations) the movement of equipment from garage 1 to garage 2 starts.

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Dishwasher, toilet with flushing water, indoor shower, handwash with water - the camp is one big smile.

21 July 2008

Dome golfing Water in the system, heat in the radiators. A very big day for the camp. Just to watch people exit the bathroom area with a smile from ear to ear.

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The main generator heat exchanger is replaced and - the heating system with the snowmelter works!

20 July 2008

Melt layer In S2 a big melt layer is found at the depth 43m and recognized as the meltlayer from the warm years around 1889 some years after the Krakatu volcanic eruption in 1883.

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High winds stops camp activities and all snug in preparing Saturday evening

19 July 2008

Drift in trenches Winds picked up in the morning hours from 20 kn to 28 kn and before noon we had to call the firn-gas team back from their site 1.4 km from camp.

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The traverse to NGRIP departs

18 July 2008

Goodbye to the Traverse The hours of departure were like preparing a family for a camping holiday – Sverrir, Lars and Anders kept running back and forth after this and that!

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Firn-gas program comes into routine and the new kitchen is under construction

17 July 2008

Flagline When the requested depths are reached the gas pumping team lowers their equipment into the holes and pump air from the bottom of the borehole.

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Reaming was finished and a camera showed the bottom of the 92m deep hole

16 July 2008

Borehole A camera was lowered down to the bottom of the hole to see the bottom before the casing tubes are placed in the hole.

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A windy day - but all activities continue

15 July 2008

Gas program The power cable installations, dome constructions, water and heating installations continued and the snowmelter was moved into camp.

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The first monitoring of greenhouse gasses.

14 July 2008

Building the second garage The frame of the second garage goes up and the end wall covers are mounted. Before the main cover can be placed wind picks up.

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The first snow the last 3 weeks

13 July 2008

Cabel work Believe it or not – we had several very happy scientists in camp because we got overcast with snowfall. We had a very busy day pulling cables in the camp.

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Main Generator moves into camp

12 July 2008

Main Generator on the move The generator was moved from the cargo area to the main dome with the Pistenbully and placed near the main dome

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Success with the fueling system

11 July 2008

Workspace Friday we received the last 13 people in NEEM for this flight period and said goodbye to Claus. We are now 32 in camp – a very high load with the still rather primitive camp we have.

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The camp drowns in cargo

10 July 2008

Unpacking pallets The second mission this week was planned for today. No passengers and a full load of cargo. This is the days where all our wishes come true.

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An eventful day

09 July 2008

Friends depart Today was the day where the exchange of the NEEM team started.

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More people arriving tomorrow

08 July 2008

Sealing dome Everybody in camp is busy preparing the camp for the increase of people from 16 to 32 tomorrow.

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A beautiful day with no winds and sunshine in the evening

07 July 2008

Cosy evening in the sun The camp is preparing to be expanded from 16 to 32 people.

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A flight period is coming up and the new fuel system is being prepared

06 July 2008

Dome construction A day with high broken overcast. In the dome the construction of the first floor continued and we have begun placing walls on the ground floor. The passage team broadens the passage between the science and drill trenches.

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The day when the moles broke through between the science and the drill trenches

05 July 2008

First floor windows After carefully measuring directions a team equipped with motorsaw managed to break through after 5 m digging between the science and drill trenches.

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A very successful day for the BAS radar team, Fabian and Tim

04 July 2008

Radar team The day started very early for Michael and Dorthe with the main camp generator on strike at 2 am.

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The drilling of the NEEM pilot hole was finalized at the depth 106.16m

03 July 2008

Final core The drillers and logger reached the final depth of the pilot hole. Construction of the main dome continued and the highlight was afternoon tea on the stair in the dome.

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The first fuel tank is on sledge

02 July 2008

Work in camp The first fuel tank has been mounted on its sledge and we will start testing the fuel pump in a few days. Drill goes on steadily with a few hours of generator problems during the morning.

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The dome is in progress and we plan the interior.

01 July 2008

Camp life In the dome, the floor on the ground floor is finished with plywood above the insulation material. The second garage snow hill was finished and the top levelled so we are ready to set the second garage tent up.

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The camp celebrated the very first NEEM ice core

30 June 2008

Drilling the first NEEM ice core Drill started after celebrating Hans Peters birthday with cake.

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The position of the deep ice core borehole was marked in the drill trench.

29 June 2008

drill hole The weather in camp is still clear with blue sky and it is a pleasure to work on the surface. The roof on the science trench is finished and sealed with snow on the edges.

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Again the roof building was the main camp task. And of course: It was Saturday night.

28 June 2008

Construction of the bridge part of the roof. Most of the team continued the work with the drill trench roof. Today we bridged the pass way between the science trench and the drill trench using the crane to support Peter placing the beams over the pass way.

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The main task of the day was to build the science trench roof. While building we received guests.

27 June 2008

Guests Friday was a day with warm temperatures. In the morning we had high overcast and low winds. We received skier 73 and received the last cargo for this week.

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Another flight mission and lots of activity

26 June 2008

Camp activities: snow blowing and moving the heavy casing tubes down into the drill trench Again a beautiful day with a flight mission and also high activity in camp. The weather today was quite similar to the weather yesterday and again a mission was planned in the early morning. Three left camp, Sarah, Bruce and Blair, and four arrived, Valerie, JiWong, Timothy and Fabian.

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Crew change

25 June 2008

Sarah baking cakes on her last day at NEEM. Sarah, you have done miracles in camp. Thanks from everybody at NEEM. Today weather was perfect for flights there was an exchange of personnel at NEEM. The remaining day was used for the newcomers to adjust to camp and camp activities and for the overlapping doctors, cooks and mechanics to exchange information. With 2 cooks in camp the food was overwhelming including sushi, lasagne, 2 cakes, and chocolate strawberries. Thanks!

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No plane, so building continues

24 June 2008

Apart from the look-out tower, the cupola is now complete. Today's flight was cancelled due to weather, so we continued mounting windows, floors and panels on the top of the main dome. It took a little while for people to adjust to the fact that there was no flight, but after that we had a good day of work in and around the main dome and finished off by celebrating mid-summer one day late, as we had expected a new crew today.

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Today we finished excavating the science trench - now we need to put a roof on

23 June 2008

Evening chat Today was the day when Gaël finally finished his job of excavation, and tomorrow he is scheduled to leave. The science trench is ready to get a roof on

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Sunday, a bit slow but we mounted some difficult panels

22 June 2008

Men at work Today was clearly a Sunday. People began work a bit later than usual; but soon people were working at their different tasks. We are also beginning to prepare for the big exchange of personnel next week.

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Summer solstice. Greenland national day

21 June 2008

Most material is on the dome Now the walls connect to the ground floor, in some places and again today we worked in sunshine all day. As usual for Saturday, Sverrir setup the shower inside the garage, and everybody got a nice wash before Saturday night dinner.

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Working in sunshine

20 June 2008

Wizards apprentice Today we worked in sunshine all day. That was a pleasure. The final panels of the vertical row were mounted, just as the Pistenbully with the crane had to be taken out of action for repairs.

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Panelling on a good weather day

19 June 2008

Juggling Today weather was surprisingly good to us. As there was almost no wind, it was a pleasure to be outside.

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Panels and snow and snow and panels....

18 June 2008

Dishes Today was the fifth day in a row with total overcast and snow fall all day. We are grateful that his is not a planned flight week, as we would have to cancel all flights.

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Panels, panels and more panels

17 June 2008

A game of dart After the first relatively easy rows of panels, the crew today faced some more difficult ones. They now mount panels on the wider and more vertical parts of the dome.

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The Main Dome gets a skin

16 June 2008

Mounting panels This morning we said goodbye to the GRIT traverse crew. They were pleasant company for two days. After they left, we went to work.

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Dome frame complete

15 June 2008

KORT TEKST TIL BILLEDET The snowy and windy weather did not really want to leave today. This prevented the drill trench crew from finishing their job. We managed to finish the dome frame.

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Blizzard – not again!

14 June 2008

Bruce in the snow Gaël was operating the snow blower in the drill trench, as the storm hit us at 12.30.

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An unusual guest and hot summer weather

13 June 2008

Seagull Construction of the main dome continues. Today we finished the dome spherical structure. And then we found a poor little visitor today.

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Dome construction and excavating the drill trench

12 June 2008

The construction site Construction of the main dome continues. Today we almost finished the 1st floor.

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Dome construction

11 June 2008

Laying the beams for the floor Today we mounted the ground floor of the main dome, and began construction of the 1st floor. Once this floor is in, we can use it as support of our scaffold to mount the very top to the dome structure.

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What a difference one good day makes

10 June 2008

Sebastian and Bruce mounting struts When we woke up this morning, the wind and the clouds were gone. At the breakfast table, everybody was happy and eager to go to work.

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The forecasted storm hit us

09 June 2008

Leaning tower Through the night the storm picked up force, and through the day the wind just blew. At the same time we were peppered by new snow and a lot of blowing snow.

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Now the drill trench has a roof

08 June 2008

The snow blower is hoisted The weather forecasts indicated we would get really windy conditions on Monday. Therefore we decided to put all efforts into putting the drill trench roof in place.

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Excavating drill trench and building dome

07 June 2008

The dome structure We mounted new levels on the dome structure today. Weather was o.k. albeit a little windy. The crane came in extremely handy.

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Another fine day for working outside

06 June 2008

After dinner conversation We mounted new levels on the dome structure today. Weather was really fine and people were eager to work outside.

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Danish Constitution Day, another fine day

05 June 2008

Building the main dome Like yesterday we received two flights today, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. As illustrated on the picture, the main dome construction is also moving on.

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Big success and break through

04 June 2008

Snow blower in the trench Today we received two flights, one in the morning and one in the evening. The whole operation went like a clockwork. We also continuously blow snow from the drill trench.

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Todays flight did not land

03 June 2008

Number ?2? flags on the skiway The plane flew over head at 12 o’clock, but did not attempt to land. We were extremely frustrated.

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The weather is fine – we work

02 June 2008

Our new Pistenbully Today the weather behaved. We were able to make a small snow hill with hardened snow for the main dome.

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We receive another plane

01 June 2008

Man under plane The very doubtful weather from Saturday night continued Sunday morning. The weather then cleared unexpectedly – even the forecasters were surprised, so we were able to call in the second plane.

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We receive a plane

31 May 2008

Digging is completed Finally the weather cleared up a bit. The morning had snow showers, but finally at 10 o’clock we were able to call in a plane. It landed at 2 o’clock, just as the weather changed again, and snow began to fall.

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Bad weather ends (hopefully)

30 May 2008

Snowmobile in snow The night was very noisy as the wind was pounding on all buildings. Snow drifts grew over night, and the bad weather continued until noon.

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Bad weather

29 May 2008

Jim in bad weather Weather has been really bad, with strong winds and a lot of blowing snow. People could only open the kitchen door with great care to stop the wind from blowing it off the hinges.

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Sticky weather continues

28 May 2008

The garage this afternoon It’s hard for people to keep occupied when most tasks in camp involves a certain amount of good weather. Strong winds, warm temperatures and constantly moving snow are not among the good things in camp right now.

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Sticky weather

27 May 2008

It was a windy day The morning was windy, overcast, and it snowed. It was also very warm, which made the snow really sticky. We decided it was not possible to continue digging the drill trench.

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A feeling of Christmas

26 May 2008

Pictures are on the way When we woke up this morning, we almost felt like Christmas. Big chunky snowflakes were falling. It was overcast with a slight breeze from S and very warm: -9 C.

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Large construction work in progress

25 May 2008

Construction of the new garage Today was the day for heavy metal, cranes and hard hats, as we raised the arches for our new garage.

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Moving onto main street and receiving visitors for afternoon tea

24 May 2008

Dinner in the new tent Today was the first big move, as we moved the heart of the camp, the kitchen, from the old 3.7m by 6m weatherport to the new 7.6m diameter circular dome tent.

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Building a new kitchen

23 May 2008

New kitchen Our carpenter, Claus, and the doctor, Hans Christian, have been hammering and sawing the whole day, making furniture for Sarah, our cook so we may move in tomorrow.

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Another fine day on the ice

22 May 2008

Two domes Today the skyline of camp changed dramatically. Both red dome tents were finished, each on a snow hill.

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After the storm

21 May 2008

A picture is on the way via satellite We woke up this morning to a different world. The weather was really nice and we got a lot of work done.

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Blizzard trouble

20 May 2008

Afternoon constructions During the night, we could fell the wind picking up. It was windy and gusty. As we woke up at 7.30, snow was everywhere.

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Is the storm coming?

19 May 2008

Claus before and after During the morning, winds increased from 14 knots to 18 knots, and as temperatures were about -27 C, the windchill became lower than -50. The wind persisted all day and in the evening the surface snow became agitated.

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Construction work begins

18 May 2008

Hill for red dome 2 We now begin to erect tents that are planned to stay up through the winter. The tents are set up on 2 m high snow hills.

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The 6th and final plane arrives

17 May 2008

The Flexmobil pulls arriving cargo from the apron to the camp area. Today we received the last plane in this flight period and another crew member: Sebastian. Ahead of us, we now have 12 days where we can concentrate on construction work. It is Saturday evening, which is relaxing time.

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The 5th plane arrives

16 May 2008

A New York Air National Guard Hercules LC-130H arrives on the apron at NEEM camp. We received fuel and timber on this week’s fifth plane. The flight conditions were so good that the plane took off using only half of the skiway without rockets.

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3rd and 4th plane arrive

15 May 2008

Rockets are fired to give an extra push to the air craft to get it airborne. We have fought bravely against nature, but we have not been able to remove the bumps on the skiway. This means that the planes cannot land with as much cargo as planned. The two planes today arrived with a 1 hour interval. There was hectic ctivity in camp at this time.

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2nd plane arrives

14 May 2008

Illusions of perspective sometimes illustrate wishful thinking. We received the second shipment of construction material today. The plane arrived just after noon and it delivered our new Pistenbully tractor.

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Another plane arrives: a nail-biting experience

13 May 2008

Cargo has just been rolled onto the new off-load sled and is being dragged away while the plane prepares for departure. Today was the day when we received the first aeroplane in a sequence of five that brings in construction material, tools and machines. Not everything went according to plan.

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Preparing for the plane to arrive

12 May 2008

The Flexmobil tracked vehicle drags a groomer on the skiway. All the buried pallets with cargo were pulled over to the cargo line, the deep holes in the snow left behind by the pallets were backfilled, and the flags marking the sites removed. At the end of the day, the camp looked tidier than ever. The whole flight operation areas for the Hercules planes: skyway (landing strip), taxi ways, and apron were groomed.

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A nice day for cleaning up

11 May 2008

Rollers are mounted on top of a heavy sledge. On this Whit Sunday we started a bit later than normal, but as weather was so beautiful we accomplished a lot. Gaël and Thomas spent all day working with shovels and the snow blower. Jim spent another day grooming the skiway, Sverrir maintained and repaired equipment and J.P. spent a day in the office (kitchen) writing reports and setting up the satellite link.

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A camp is taking shape

10 May 2008

A view from the West of the old camp (right) and the new camp area (left). Everybody now feels much more acclimatized. People are sleeping well and the cold does not bite as much anymore. The process of making the camp ready to receive 5 flights next week is in good progress. Hard manual labour is still the way forward.

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A fine day spent doing planned tasks.

09 May 2008

The NEEM camp on the third day. Today was warmer than the past two days, and as there was less wind, work outside was quite comfortable. The shovel was again the main tool. It takes a lot of shovelling to excavate a heavy sled with cargo.

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We dig and receive the second plane at NEEM this year

08 May 2008

The empty plane just before departure at NEEM. The second flight at NEEM arrived with cargo, and the remaining time was spent shovelling snow away from equipment and preparing the skiway.

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Arrival at NEEM

07 May 2008

Sverrir at the front of our kitchen tent. Luckily everything was intact inside. After the attempt to fly into NEEM on Tuesday, the flight to NEEM today was successful. We departed Kangerlussuaq 8:25 onboard Skier 94, landed at NEEM 11:22, and at 11:52, the plane left us in camp with 5 shovels and a lot of snow.

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Out and back

06 May 2008

The put-in team ready for boarding the Hercules plane. The put-in team of five people arrived in Greenland Sunday and Monday May 4-5, and today, a first but unsuccessful attempt to open the NEEM camp was made.

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Yet another day at the office

02 May 2008

View over the ice margin
After another day working with cargo, skidoo assembly, and office work, the FOMs decided to take advantage of the perfect weather and spend the evening on a visit to the ice margin.

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From harbour to airport

01 May 2008

Moving beams for trench construction.
Work on cargo handling continues: Here Lars is moving a fraction of the 35 tonnes of timber that will be used to build the roof of the trenches in camp.

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A big bird in town

28 April 2008

A C5 freighter visiting Kangerlussuaq

Our cargo from Copenhagen has arrived, and a US Air Force 105th Air National Guard C5 cargo airplane visited Kangerlussuaq Monday.

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Fleet management

26 April 2008

Working in the snow in front of warehouse During these first days, most of the time is spent getting the vehicles running and re-establishing the infrastructure. 

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Field office in Kangerlussuaq opened

24 April 2008

Warning sign at the runway end and view over mountains The first team arrived in Kangerlussuaq and opened the field office, which is the logistics and communications hub during the field season.

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