Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Fuel Pit (Warning - acronym alert)

We are setting up what is called the Fuel Pit tomorrow.  This is the area on the station, next to the ice runway,  that is involved with fueling and defueling planes during the summer.  Because the fuel pit is not needed in winter all the buildings, fuel tanks and fuel lines are taken to a remote part of the station until right before the summer season starts.  If they had been left where they were huge drifts would form behind them and be difficult to clear right about now.  The assemblage of buildings and tanks includes the AFM (Aircraft Fueling Module) that contains the pumps, valves and controls that allow the fuel to be sent to where it is needed; the PAX terminal where people can wait in a heated area when departing; several 5k and 10k gallon fuel tanks, the BARFF (Building - Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting), and all the piping, fuel lines and electrical utilities needed to run everything.  Everything has to be dragged from remote parts of the station.  All this is quite an undertaking and should take most of the day.  But when it is finished we will almost be ready to receive airplanes at South Pole.

I'll try to take some pictures of all these activities but it is still in the -70's so it is hard to keep the camera warm (much less my fingers and poor frostbitten nose).


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