Ice Breaker Ship rescue in Antarctica

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Ice Breaker Ship rescue in Antarctica

Post  Raymond_Smith on Fri Dec 27, 2013 2:22 pm

Ice Breaker Ship rescue in Antarctica








https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WGv_B-8JbpI


Last edited by Raymond_Smith on Fri Dec 27, 2013 2:38 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Ice Breaker Ship rescue in Antarctica

Post  Raymond_Smith on Fri Dec 27, 2013 2:24 pm

Great news': Rescue vessel within sight of explorer ship stuck in Antarctic ice

After a trip to Mawson Station, an icon of Antarctic exploration, a vessel and its scientific team from Australia became boxed in by ice. Now, all they can do is wait for an icebreaker to arrive and cut them free. NBC's Martin Fletcher reports.
By Alexander Smith, NBC News contributor
Rescuers were finally within sight of a ship stuck in Antarctic sea ice Friday, one of the explorers on board said, three days after it became stuck on Christmas Eve.
"Great news," Professor Chris Turney of the University of New South Wales in Australia tweeted, along with a picture of the distant rescue vessel. "Icebreaker Snow Dragon on horizon with penguins! Everyone very happy!"

Russian-built MV Akademik Shokalskiy, with 74 people aboard, has been frozen in a remote part of the Antarctic some 1,700 miles south of Australia since Tuesday. A distress call from the ship was picked up Christmas morning.
Professor Chris Turney, leader of the Australasian Antarctic Expedition, which is traveling aboard the Shokalskiy, said the Chinese ice-breaking vessel Snow Dragon was expected to come and clear a path for them by Friday night.
"We are actually in a blizzard at the moment," Turney said in a video posted Thursday on his Twitter feed. "We have wind speeds on average of 50 kph [around 30 mph], reaching in excess of 70 kph [about 45 mph]. We're surrounded by sea ice -- we just can't get through."
As of Friday morning Australian Eastern Daylight Time (Thursday afternoon EST), he told NBC News, "most of the winds have passed and visibility is a lot better."
Turney, who is also professor of climate change at the University of New South Wales, said everyone on board was safe and well.
"Spirits are really high, it's quite remarkable how well the team have pulled together," Turney said.
"We're just currently waiting for the ship to come in, but the teams are currently continuing the science program and keeping themselves busy, which is fantastic," he added.
Later, Turney tweeted that the Snow Dragon was getting close.

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Re: Ice Breaker Ship rescue in Antarctica

Post  Raymond_Smith on Fri Dec 27, 2013 2:27 pm


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Re: Ice Breaker Ship rescue in Antarctica

Post  Raymond_Smith on Sat Dec 28, 2013 2:25 pm

(CNN) -- South Pole weather has stymied a rescue by a Chinese icebreaker trying to reach an expedition vessel trapped for the past four days in frozen seas, a ship officer told CNN Friday.
The Chinese icebreaker Xue Long, or Snow Dragon, was just six nautical miles away from the rescue, but now it's stuck in an Antarctica ice floe, too.
The Chinese crew is hoping a French icebreaker 14 nautical miles away will arrive and offer relief, said Zhu Li, chief officer of the Chinese ship.
But it's likely the French vessel Astrolabe will also be slowed by the polar cap's extreme frigidity, Zhu said.
Those two icebreakers -- plus a third, from Australia -- were battling the planet's coldest environment in trying to reach the stranded Russian ship MV Akademik Shokalskiy, whose 74 researchers, crew and tourists remained in good condition despite being at a frozen standstill since Monday.
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The Snow Dragon is in near-constant communication with the Russian exploration vessel and has ample supplies of water, food and medicine -- even a helicopter -- if the ice-bound Shokalskiy needed them, Zhu said.
The Russian expedition ship is carrying scientists and passengers led by an Australian climate change professor, but they all may have to wait two more days for one or all three icebreakers to free it, said Capt. Wang Jiangzhong of the Snow Dragon.
"Right now we are waiting for winds to blow ice away so we can move closer," Wang told CNN. "The current ice condition is exceeding our capabilities to break through further."
The captain also acknowledged his ship may need help from the other icebreakers headed to the area if conditions deteriorate.
"We are in continual communication with the (stranded) ship," he said in a satellite phone call with CNN. "I think it's at least a form of emotional relief for them to know we are nearby to help. We know that they (passengers) are all doing well on that ship."
The Aurora Australis out of Australia is two days from the Russian ship, its captain, Murray Doyle, told CNN on Friday.
China's State Oceanic Administration said the Xue Long sailed through an intense cyclone to reach the Akademik Shokalskiy sooner.
Meanwhile, spirits were high Friday aboard the Akademik Shokalskiy.
"The vessel is fine, it's safe and everyone on board is very well," expedition leader Chris Turney, a professor of climate change at University of New South Wales in Australia told CNN. "Morale is really high."
It got stuck in the ice on Monday night -- 15 days after setting out on the second leg of its research trip.
According to Turney, the ship was surrounded by ice up to nearly 10 feet (3 meters) thick some 100 nautical miles east of the French base Dumont D'Urville, about 1,500 nautical miles south of Hobart, Tasmania.
On Christmas morning, the ship sent a satellite distress signal after conditions failed to clear.
The crew had a "great Christmas" despite their situation, Turney told CNN earlier. He said crew members have used the delay to get more work done.
"We've just kept the team busy," he said.
The expedition is trying to update scientific measurements taken by an Australian expedition led by Douglas Mawson that set out in 1911.
The expedition to gauge the effects of climate change on the region began November 27. The second, and current leg of the trip, started December 8 and was scheduled to conclude with a return to New Zealand on January 4.
Turney said the ship should still be back in New Zealand on time.

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Re: Ice Breaker Ship rescue in Antarctica

Post  Raymond_Smith on Mon Dec 30, 2013 2:22 pm


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Re: Ice Breaker Ship rescue in Antarctica

Post  Raymond_Smith on Mon Dec 30, 2013 2:26 pm


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Re: Ice Breaker Ship rescue in Antarctica

Post  Raymond_Smith on Mon Dec 30, 2013 2:42 pm


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Re: Ice Breaker Ship rescue in Antarctica

Post  Raymond_Smith on Mon Dec 30, 2013 3:46 pm

An Australian icebreaker worked its way slowly through thick ice off Antarctica early Monday in the latest attempt to rescue about 70 people aboard a stranded research ship.
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The ship, the 233-foot Akademik Shokalskiy, became stuck in the ice last Tuesday when strong winds pushed loose pack ice up against it near Cape de la Motte, about 1,700 miles south of Hobart, Tasmania. It is carrying the Australasian Antarctic Expedition, scientists and tourists who are studying changes to the environment of East Antarctica in the century since the region was first explored.

By Monday, the icebreaker, the Aurora Australis, was 11 nautical miles from the Shokalskiy, according to the Australian Maritime Safety Authority, which is coordinating the rescue operation. Chris Turney, a leader of the research expedition, said in a phone interview from the ship, “We’ve been in contact with them and we can see them.”

The Australis is the second icebreaker to try to reach the ship. A Chinese vessel, the Xue Long, had tried early Saturday but was stalled by the thick ice.

Dr. Turney, who is a professor of climate change at the University of New South Wales, said that if the Australian ship was unable to clear a path to free the Shokalskiy, the Xue Long, which has remained in the area, had a helicopter that could be used to ferry people to the Australis. The Australis would take them to Casey Station, a base operated by the Australian Antarctic Division, and from there they would take other ships home.

“We’ve warned everyone on board that that’s a possibility,” Dr. Turney said. All on board are well and morale is good, he said.

The expedition, with a multidisciplinary team of about 25 professors and graduate students and 20 tourists, set sail from Bluff, New Zealand, on Dec. 8 on what was to be a monthlong voyage. The expedition is retracing some of the travels, and replicating some of the studies, of the Australian geologist Douglas Mawson, who first explored East Antarctica from 1911-14.

The ship anchored at the edge of pack ice on Dec. 18, and Dr. Turney and others spent a day journeying about 45 miles across the ice to Mawson’s hut. The ship then headed east through open water. But as it began heading north, it “ran afoul of very strong winds” that pushed the loose ice in its way. “It pegged us in,” he said, and the frozen expanse quickly grew as more ice piled up. “At first we were just two nautical miles from getting to open water, and now it’s 20,” he said.

Even though it is summer in the Antarctic, waiting for the ice to break up on its own is not an option, Dr. Turney said, because of the risk that the ship could drift along with the ice and collide with one of several icebergs in the area, which are drifting independently of the pack ice.

Since the ship became stuck, Dr. Turney and others have been a regular presence on Twitter and other social media sites. Some have made short videos describing their experiences.

Dr. Turney said that some of the people aboard had gone onto the ice to study birds and make other scientific observations, and that others had occupied themselves on board with ad-hoc classes in subjects like knot tying. And a steady diet of films has been available to help pass the time, he said.

“At first, people were starting to watch disaster movies,” Dr. Turney added. “But I had to stop that.” Now it is mostly comedies, although episodes of the hit series “Breaking Bad” have been popular, too.

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Re: Ice Breaker Ship rescue in Antarctica

Post  Raymond_Smith on Thu Jan 02, 2014 3:51 pm

Helicopter Rescue






All 52 passengers were airlifted off a research ship that has been trapped in Antarctic ice for more than a week, according to officials.

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority said today the passengers were transported by helicopter off MV Akademik Shokalskiy and taken to the Australian icebreaker Aurora Australis.

"We've made it to the Aurora australis safe & sound. A huge thanks to the Chinese & @AusAntarctic for all their hard work! #spiritofmawson," expedition leader Chris Turney tweeted.

Saving Stranded Passengers on Cruise Ship in Antarctica Via Airlift

The helicopter on board a Chinese icebreaker, the Snow Dragon, began airlifting passengers around 3 a.m. ET from a makeshift helipad created on ice next to the trapped vessel. The Aurora will now carry the passengers to the Australian island state of Tasmania, arriving by mid-January.

Shortly before the rescue began, expedition spokesman Alvin Stone told ABC News in an email, "Fingers crossed this all goes smoothly and we are coming to the end of this soap opera on ice."

The 74 scientists, tourists and crew aboard the Akademik Shokalskiy, a Russian-crewed research vessel touring the Antarctic, have been trapped in ice since Christmas Eve. Attempts by three ice breakers to reach the ship have been foiled by the thick ice and raging storms. Previous air rescues have been delayed because of blinding snow, strong winds and fog.

The 22 crew members are expected to remain with the vessel, according to AMSA, who is coordinated the rescue. The ship isn't in danger of sinking and has weeks' worth of supplies on board.

Passengers on the Akademik Shokalskiy have been passing the time by reading and watching movies, but everyone took the situation in stride.

Live footage emerged Tuesday of a group of the researchers aboard the ship ringing in 2014 by singing a song about their experience and laughing.

The ship's passengers are mostly scientific researchers from Australia and New Zealand, in addition to some members of the public who signed up to accompany the scientists on a journey retracing the steps of the first exploration to Antarctica some 100 years ago.

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