Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Summit Camp, Greenland

The C-130 brought us into Summit Camp at 11:15 AM local time. The photo on the left is an aerial view of the Greenland ice sheet, clouds, and the blue sky. The white ice and clouds blend together, and to me represents the seeming unfettered vastness of Greenland. The plane lands on ice, so skis are used. The skis are fixed, but wheels may be extended under them for landing on the runway, and retracted as needed. C-130s are not outwardly beautiful planes. Rather, their beauty stems from their versatility, dependability, and the sense of security one has when flying in them. We placed most of our belongings in our tent, and brought "freezables" into the "Big House" (picture to the right) where there is heat. Then, there were introductions, lunch and an orientation session.

I am sitting at a computer in our team's Quonset hut (below left, Dr. Jack Dibb and Dr. Greg Huey) on the edge of the clean air sector. The team is examining some basic aspects of atmospheric chemistry. This research is critical. Much of the science relating to the ozone hole, and global warming are dependent on the team's research. In a simplified fashion, our team's scientists seek to verify or establish the baseline of some atmospheric gases, and the interaction among them. Or, as I think of it. Imagine weighing yourself on a bathroom scale. To obtain a true reading, you must set or tare the scale to zero. If you do not, then your weight might be off, and you would never know it. So, the research conducted by our team is setting the baseline or calibrating for several important atmospheric gases. Then, other teams will have more confidence in their measurements, and policy makers can make better decisions.


Dee said...

My whole family is enjoying your postings. It is almost like being there.

Barbara said...

Glad to know you made it! Great postings. We are lloking forward to reading everyday to follow your journey.
Love from Atlanta!