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Heavy Equipment Shop - South Pole Antarctica by Ella Derbyshire

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About This Gigapan

Taken by
Ella Derbyshire Ella Derbyshire
Explore score
Print Pricing
$7.00 to $982.00
0.07 Gigapixels
Date added
Mar 16, 2009
Date taken
Mar 16, 2009

Nikon D80's


GigapanMagazine.org Will open in a new tab or window vol 1 issue 2

Contributor: Cap'n Jack Sharp

The vehicles at the South Pole require a lot of tender loving care. It's cold outside. Steel becomes brittle. Oil doesn't flow and everything gets encased with ice.

Winter is fast approaching. Most of the vehicles that we use here now are on tracks or skies. Rubber tires just won't do in these temperatures. The ground is an uneven maze of white drifts that are sculpted and redistributed daily by wind-blown snow and ice. Even the tracked dozers and snowmobiles can get bogged down in sugary snow or a large drift.

The heavy equipment shop is usually busy completing preventative maintenance to keep the vehicles running and repairing broken machines that have not fared well in the cold. Broken parts can become an insurmountable issue when replacements are needed and not available until the planes start flying again.

You can see a variety of motor vehicles in here today. Have a look around to discover what's making tracks at the South Pole as sunset approaches.

The 15 images of this panorama were photographed with a Nikon D80 and stitched with Autopano Pro.

Gigapan Comments (1)

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  1. Ella Derbyshire

    Ella Derbyshire (August 29, 2009, 04:43PM )

    The South Pole VMF heavy shop is a real life saver for the mechanics that work here. In the summer months when the temps are in the -20's and above it’s not too bad working outside but you still need to have warm parkas gloves and boots just to stay outside and do what is needed.. But in the winter when the temps get into the -70 and -80's below it might take us a day just to get an engine running on a D7 dozer and another day just to get the other parts of the equipment heated up just to move it to the shop. If you happen to touch the metal it feels like and instant burn just like you were burned with fire. Once in the shop you need to let the equipment sit at least 24 hr to warm up so you can touch the metal to work on the equipment. The South Pole VMF is responsible for over 50 pieces of equipment to from D8 dozers to 953 track loaders to vans to snowmobiles that need to be maintained in top working order in conditions that are neither fit for man or beast. ----Cap'n Jack

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