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  • The Australian Collection of Antarctic Microorganisms (ACAM) was established in 1986 at the University of Tasmania as a collection for microorganisms from the Antarctic continent as well as from subantarctic islands and the Southern Ocean. ACAM is one of the few collections in the world dedicated to the collection of Antarctic bacteria and since its inception has grown to nearly 400 strains. Many of these strains have been isolated from lakes and marine waters in the Vestfold Hills region of Antarctica near Davis Station. Salinity, redox potential, light and temperature all vary dramatically between these water bodies and, on many occasions, have been shown to vary with water depth within them. Microorganisms living in these ecosystems cope with a variety of physical extremes which characterise the Antarctic environment. The potential for biotechnological use of Antarctic microorganisms has become more evident from basic studies on the taxonomy and molecular biology of antarctic microbes. Recently, bacteria have been isolated that (i) contain polyunsaturated w-3 fatty acids, (ii) degrade hydrocarbons (including polycyclic aromatics) and (iii) produce bioactive natural products. ACAM is a continually expanding collection. The search for Antarctic microorganisms that may be commercially exploited has only just begun. Future research should identify novel strains that offer further potential for biotechnology and, at the same time, provide a better understanding of the Antarctic ecosystem. ACAM is now available through the Australian Antarctic Data Centre's Biodiversity database, or via the ACAM website. This work was completed as part of ASAC project 65 (ASAC_65).

  • This is a scanned copy of the vertebrate ecologists report from Davis Station in 1983, written by Rhys Puddicombe. Taken from the report: This annual report covers the period 9/11/82 to 10/12/83. As such it is an incomplete record, as some projects are ongoing until mid-January 1984, whilst others will be begun and completed between early December and mid-January. Where this is the case only a brief outline will be presented to illustrate the aims of these projects. This report will generally deal only with practical work and raw results as the majority of analyses will not be completed until early 1984. The two major projects for the year have been seal tagging/resighting, and penguin vomit analysis. Several additional projects are complementary to this work, but for clarity's sake will be covered separately. Finally, several minor projects have involved either observations or data and material collections for analysis by people in Australia. Topics covered by this report: Lakes Fishing Fat collection Briefing/equipping members of Dick Smith Explorer Elephant Seals - Davis Beach census - Day trips - Branding - Collection of teeth and toenails - Seal census on voyage through pack ice Weddell Seals - Faeces collection for Ken Green - Seal recording - Seal tagging/resighting - Aerial weddell surveys/census Seabird census from Australia to Mawson Ice Edge Giant Petrel banding Vomiting of Southern Fulmars and Cape Petrels and bolus collection of Skuas and Giant Petrels Emperor Penguin vomiting Adelie penguins - Blood collections - Dead adelie collection - Egg collection - Penguin banding - Counts of breeding reference groups - Adelie vomiting

  • This dataset contains the outdated and redundant bathymetric contour data for some of the lakes of the Vestfold Hills. Lake data for Burton Lake, Deep lake and Ellis Fjord.

  • This data set contains locations of sample sites for Ellis Fjord (1989), Organic Lake (1985) and Deep Lake (1975, 1975) in the Vestfold Hills. Unfortunately little is known as to what samples were collected. It is believed that water samples were taken at all locations, and that bottom sediment samples were taken at least at Deep Lake. When questioned in 2009, the investigating scientist was unable to remember exactly what work was done. The original maps may provide some clues.

  • This is a scanned copy of the report of sediment core activities at Davis Station, 1985 by Lin Jian-ping. Paraphrased from the abstract of the report: Sediment deposited in the bottom of water provide a historical record of the biological and chemical changes which have occurred in the places since they were formed. One of the research programs at Davis in 1985 was the sediment coring program. Sediment cores were taken from some places of the Vestfold Hills, Antarctica, and were analysed for water content, total organic content and non-polar lipid content.

  • From the referenced paper: The frigid concentration or freezing of seawater is an important natural phenomenon in the polar regions and results in the precipitation of a different sequence of salts - and thus produces brines of different composition - to that formed during isothermal evaporation under temperate conditions (about 20-25 degrees C). Seawater freezing, however, has been studied less extensively than evaporation and somewhat greater uncertainty exists over the exact nature of the compositional pathway followed. Most investigators have shown that the precipitation of mirabilite (Na2SO4 - 10 H2O) or gypsum (CaSO4 - 2 H2O), which both occur at the same seawater concentration factor (SWCF), is the critical difference between frigid and evaporative concentration, respectively, a consequence of the very different temperature dependence of the solubilities of these salts, as well as the effect of sodium chloride on these properties. This difference can be considered to represent a temperature-dependent chemical divide in the closed-basin concentration of seawater because it determines significantly the major ion composition of the brine and the salt mineral assemblage precipitated on further evolution of the system. Recently new insights into seawater freezing have been achieved through improvements in existing chemical equilibrium models. Along with the results of some associated experimental work, this has provided evidence for the formation of gypsum during freezing, contradicting the accepted Ringer-Nelson-Thompson model of frigid concentration firmly established in the 1950's and through subsequent studies, but validating an alternative model proposed by Gitterman two decades later.

  • Colonisation of Lake Fletcher, a hypersaline, meromictic lake in the Vestfold Hills, Antarctica, by the calanoid copepod Drepanopus bispinosus, the cyclopoid copepod Oncea curvata and an undescribed cydippid ctenophore is discussed. In 1978, salinity direstly under the ice was 66 ppt and repeated net hauls found no zooplankton. In 1983, adults of D. bispinosus were found, and in 1984, a reproductively active population of this species. Surface water salinity in 1984 was 56 ppt. During winter 1986, surface salinity was 54 ppt and three zooplankton species (D. bispinosus, O curvata and an undescribed cydippid ctenophore) had established populations in the lake. In 1986/87, high tides caused nearby Taynaya Bay to flood into the lake, and three further species (the calanoid, Paralabidocera antarctica, and two harpacticoids, Harpacticus furcatus and Idomene sp.) were found in the lake. It appears that periodic flooding after 1978 caused a salinity decrease in the lake from 66 to 54 ppt, and this enabled some invertebrate species to maintain year-round populations, whereas others require marine incursions to re-establish summer only populations. The fields in this dataset are: Date Salinity Record Species

  • Taken from sections of the report: Introduction This report details the survey work carried out in Antarctica and Heard Island from December of 1996 to March of 1997 by AUSLIG on behalf of Australian Antarctic Divisions Mapping Program. The principle aim of this work was to acquire aerial photography of; the coastal areas west of Mawson, Scullin and Murray Monoliths, the immediate area around Davis station, Gaussberg and Heard Island. A number of other tasks were also carried out. In the following pages each task will be dealt with in terms of the technique employed and the results achieved and coordinates will be quoted as appropriate to the topic being discussed. Where these coordinates have been derived from GPS observations a detailed report on the processing of each baseline can be found at Appendix C. These result files have also been supplied in digital form. The survey work was carried out by the following people : Paul Digney Antarctic Division Volunteer Roger Handsworth Platypus Engineering Noel Ward AUSLIG This report does not cover the specifics of the work carried out by Roger Handsworth, that being the subject of separate reports to be submitted by him. Time Frame The survey field party departed Hobart at 5pm on Monday 9 December 1996 aboard RV Aurora Australis, Voyage 4 of the Antarctic re-supply season. Voyage 4 commenced cargo operations at Mawson on 22 December 1996. The survey party returned to Australia via Heard island from Davis Station departing Davis on 15 March 1997 aboard RV Aurora Australis, Voyage 5. Voyage 5 returned to Hobart on Saturday 29 March 1997. All passengers disembarked at about 5pm that day. The movements of the Survey party between operational areas whilst within Antarctica are as follows : 22 December 1996 - The Stillwell Hills field party, including the survey party, departed for the Stillwell Hills directly from RV Aurora Australis, 10 January 1997 - The Stillwell Hills field party, including the survey party moved to Kemp Peak depot, Stillwell Hills 11 January 1997 - The Survey party move to Mawson by S76 helicopter 29 January 1997 - Move to Davis Station via Sansom Island, by S76 helicopter, 13 February 1997 - 'Day trip' to Gaussberg ex. Davis by S76 helicopter. Aim and Project Brief Work was undertaken by AUSLIG for Antarctic Division in a number of operational areas this season. The principle areas of activity Mawson Station and the coastal areas west to Kloa Point, Davis Station and the Vestfold Hills, Gaussberg and Heard Island. The actual tasks to be carried out and the prioritisation of those tasks, at each location defined by Australian Antarctic Division and were detailed in their Brief to Surveyors(see Appendix A). As the season progressed variations both in the scope of the work programme and the relative priorities of tasks within the programme occurred. Such changes were forwarded from the Mapping Officer if originating in Kingston; or if originating in Antarctica were discussed with the Mapping Officer, if operational circumstances allowed, before implementation. At each location the major task was the acquisition of aerial photography and then establishment of ground control for that photography. Other significant tasks included vertical connections between tide gauge bench marks and the ARGN GPS sites.

  • This data set contains the most recent bathymetric contour data for some of the lakes of the Vestfold Hills. Lake depth data (all data except Ellis Fjord) was collected from echo sounding records of courses plotted on enlarged aerial photographs (HighJump photography). Courses were straight lines from shoreline features identified on both the photographs and in the field. Depths were plotted on the enlarged photographs and contours drawn between marked depths. Accuracy for position -+ 5 metres. Accuracy for depth -+ 2 metres. Ellis Fjord was sounded in winter from the ice surface. Painted 44 gallon drums were set up on hills on both sides of the fjord. When a depth position was recorded by weighted line through an ice hole, a theodolite (T2) at the hole was sited to several drums on the land. These triangulations were used to determine the position of the depth in the fjord. Accuracy for position -+ 2cm. Accuracy for depth -+ 2 metres. The water bodies included in the dataset are: Ace Lake Burton Lake Club Lake Deep Lake Ellis Fjord Lake Abraxas Lake Anderson Lake Jabs Lake Lebed Lake Nicholson Lake Stinear Lake Watts Oblong Lake Organic Lake See also the following maps at the provided links: Map 15618: Deep Lake Marine Profile - Plan and Longitudinal section (Sheet 2 of 2) Map 15621: Club Lake Marine Profile – Plan and Longitudinal Section (Sheet 1 of 2) Map 15622: Lake Jabs, Saline Lake Profiles – Plan and Longitudinal Sections

  • Taken from sections of the report: This report has been prepared as a supplement to the 1997/98 Survey Report by John Hyslop and contains solely comments and recommendations as seen from the perspective of the volunteer survey student. It is hoped this report may be of some use in the future planning and operation of Surveying and Mapping expeditions to Antarctica. The report has been divided according to each area visited and discusses the work achieved and highlights any possible improvements either in the actual surveys undertaken or the execution of the program as a whole. Typical issues include helicopter operations, aerial photography, the oblique mount, collaboration with other field parties, transportation and so on. VOYAGE SOUTH The voyage south provided the ideal opportunity to begin the detailed planning of the work to come. Flight planning for the photography was started and locations for photo control throughout the offshore islands at Mawson were determined. It was important to prioritize which work was to be undertaken first throughout the offshore islands at Mawson. This was to ensure the most important work was completed before the sea ice deteriorated and prevented travel on quads. The voyage to Mawson went via Casey where the surveyors were required to undertake a small amount of work during the stop over. Ice conditions prevented the Aurora reaching Casey. John and I were unable to make it to Casey due to the long fly off and limited time. Ian Sutherland (Station Leader at Casey) informed us that snow conditions over the station would have prevented most survey work anyway. This was the perfect example that survey work in Antarctica is totally dependent on current weather conditions in addition to the 'A' factor. This highlighted the fact that all plans for work in the Antarctic are required to be 'dynamic' and hence the various priorities listed in the brief were appreciated. It was quite frustrating spending close to 4 weeks on the Aurora before arriving on the continent and beginning the work proper. The frustration culminated in the problem with the Aurora's rudder and expeditioners being told we may be returning to Australia even though we were within fly-off distance to Mawson.