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The Dobrowolski Station is a scientific station located in Antarctica (Bunger Hills, Wilkes Land). It belongs to the Polish Academy of Sciences (PAS) and is managed by the Institute of Geophysics, Polish Academy of Sciences (IG PAS). The station remains in hibernation since the late 1980s, but thanks to the recent progress in the development of measuring instruments, scientific data acquisition, and telecommunication networks, IG PAS is considering to revitalize the station.

The map below shows the exact localisation of the station.

History

Rocky oasis, exhibiting the Antarctic basement over the area of ca. 1000 km2, was discovered by Lt Cdr David E. Bunger during US Navy expedition (1947) under Adm. Richard E. Byrd’s command. Nine years later, at the shore of the Algae (Figurnoje) Lake and in the vicinity of the Bunger Hills, USSR built a permanent station named Oasis (66°16′29″S 100°45′00″E). In 1958 the Station consisting of two wooden houses ca. 20 m2 each and a few smaller huts, was handed over to Poland and named after a Polish geophysicist, meteorologist and polar explorer, Prof. Antoni B. Dobrowolski.

In subsequent years, Poland organized, with the logistical support of the Soviet Antarctic Expedition (SAE), three research expeditions, lasting several weeks each, which resulted in a number of scientific publications reporting on basic parameters of geophysical potential fields and meteorology. In 1987, some 200 m west of the Dobrowolski Station, SAE built several new huts, and named them Oasis 2. Since then the Dobrowolski Station remained in hibernation, and was only sporadically visited by various teams (the last one being the Australian Antarctic Division in 2010). HSM No 49 Bunger Hill Pillar and HSM No 10 Soviet Oasis Station Observatory are situated nearby.

To see the pictures of the Polish research expediton in 1978, please click on the image below.


Photo: Maciej Tałałas

Revitalisation plans

The idea of revitalisation was coined by Prof. Marek Lewandowski, Head of the Department of Polar and Marine Research at the Institute of Geophysics, Polish Academy of Sciences.

The revitalisation plans assume that the Station will be used as a single-sited, un-manned automatized research infrastructure, in the first stage dedicated to meteorological measurements, which will be followed by the installation of a broad-band seismometer and a magnetometer for recording of variations of geomagnetic field in the frequency range from DC to about 1Hz.

All instruments will be fuel cell/solar/wind powered, transmitting data on-line. Every year the Station would be visited for service and research of different (biotic and/or abiotic) aspects of the local environment, which is an excellent analogue to the Martian environment. Detailed surveys and inventories of all existing infrastructure in and around the Dobrowolski Station will be made during the subsequent visits, and adequate plans for the infrastructure maintenance will be made.

Foreign partners willing to cooperate in the revitalization of the Dobrowolski Station are warmly welcome. International cooperation for installation, service and data management would be very desirable.

The image below links to photos of current state of infrastructure (photos courtesy of the Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute – www.aari.ru).

Contact

For more information, please contact:

dr Adam Nawrot

Department of Polar and Marine Research, Institute of Geophysics, Polish Academy of Sciences

E-mail: anawrot [@] igf.edu.pl

Phone: (+48) 22 69 15 843

 

Webmaster: Wojciech Piotrowski, e-mail: wpiotrowski [@] igf.edu.pl, phone: (+48) 22 69 15 817