Belgica120-Weather Check

With only 4 days to departure for Argentina and just a week for the planned departure from Ushuaia, things are getting serious. For most greater endeavours I undertake, I tend to start dreaming about it in advance. Same for this expedition; at least for that matter. My dream, as most dreams go, was a bit incoherent, but I do clearly remember being on a sailing ship, which unsurprisingly resembled the ‘Australis’ quite a bit. I was sitting on deck just before the mast and tried to keep my mind off these insanely high waves, which towered over our ship like mountains. In my dream I wasn’t particularity worried … but neither was I particularly calm.

So naturally, as I woke up, the first thing was to check the weather forecast for the Drake: for the next 3 days winds between 9 to 17 m/s, waves between 3 and 7 meters and temperatures around 4°C. Hopefully we will be lucky with the weather and we can proceed with our planned departure from Ushuaia to the Antarctic Peninsula on the 24th.


Belgica120-Final preparations

The duffel bags are (nearly) packed and ready, waiting at the entry of my flat for departure. Last minute preparations are still to be completed. The lion’s share of our (scientific) equipment has already been shipped months ago and is waiting for us in Ushuaia. However, there are always some last purchases to be made. Five days until departure: we will meet at the train station Brussel Zuid (Midi) and together take the train to Charles de Gaulle, Paris. From there we will board the plane to Buenos Aires. Ready for our low-emission expedition to the Antarctic Peninsula!



Upcoming meeting: Polar 2018

15 – 18 June 2018 SCAR and IASC/ASSW Business & Satellite Meetings
19 – 23 June 2018 SCAR/IASC Open Science Conference & Open COMNAP Session
24 – 26 June 2018 SCAR Delegates Meeting & 2018 Arctic Observing Summit

POLAR2018 is a joint event from the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research SCAR and the International Arctic Science Committee IASC. The SCAR meetings, the ASSW and the Open Science Conference will be hosted by the Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL under the patronage of the Swiss Committee on Polar and High Altitude Research. The WSL-Institute for Snow and Avalanche Research SLF is organising POLAR2018,  which will take place in Davos, Switzerland from 15 – 26 June 2018.

Workshop: Mutual benefits between atmospheric research and radio based science over polar regions

In the context of the Solar Terrestrial Centre of Excellence (STCE) and the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR),  we are organising a workshop at the Royal Observatory of Belgium on December 4th, 2017 on the Mutual benefits between atmospheric research and radio based science over polar regions.

A more detailed description of the workshop is available at

If you wish to give a presentation at this workshop, please submit your abstract on the event page. The deadline is 20 November 2017.
In case you want to attend the meeting, please register on the event page. The deadline for registration is 27 November 2017. 

Feel free to circulate these info to your colleagues that may be interested. Don’t hesitate to contact us for any additional information.

We hope to see you for constructive discussions at the workshop.

Contributions are welcome on both aspects:

  •       The workshop foresees the participation of scientists studying the neutral and/or the ionized part of the atmosphere, from the lower to further upper regions such as the magnetosphere. Presentations dealing with climatology studies on their characteristics and abnormal behaviours during extreme events are welcome.
  •       Contributions from researchers of Arctic and Antarctic operations that need to remove or mitigate the atmospheric contribution from their measurements (such as geophysicists, geologists, geodesists, radio astronomers and remote sensing researchers) are also encouraged.


This workshop is organised with the support of the Solar-Terrestrial Centre of Excellence and the Scientific Commitee on Antarctic Research.