Radio VLV 1980

We here at Radio have had yet another busy year, as a supporting element to Mawson it is our job to send and receive the "wyssa's" that make our life miserable or happy - whatever way you look at it. We are also a prime station for Antarctic meteorological traffic for one month exceeding 390,000 words which makes us a very busy station indeed.

To keep the station staff happy we have four radio operators here at Mawson working full-time on two shifts - Peter Stickland, Dagur Vilhjalmsson, Steven Harris and Tom Maggs. We work inter-Antarctic radio skeds as well as international schedules with Pretoria met network. Our own Met traffic is forwarded to Melbourne and from then it goes onto the international Met network for consumption by pilots and whoever requires it.

To get away from the constant grind of Met traffic we occasionally have voice contact with chartered Antarctic flights during the summer period, unfortunately none of these flights come close to Mawson but it sure is nice to hear the "outside" world now and then. To keep us in touch with all forms of transport we also have the odd skeds with ships sailing in Antarctic waters and who require relay of their scientific/private traffic.

Our little radio office has a commanding view of the Mawson harbour, (at present covered with ice). From here we can see the comings and goings of Nella Dans, Nanok S's and anything else that cares to approach our little outpost. At the moment our three pups are chasing half a dozen skuas on the ice, neither are making much progress.

Our twice daily radio telephone traffic back home keeps the remaining expeditioners happy, and they can chat to their loved ones even if they can't see them. Our circuits go via International Radio at Sydney and from there to all parts of Australia/the World. Our two radio technicians "Friar Tuck" and "Steelo" have had a very busy year keeping the equipment and aerials in some sort of working order, I believe we can say that they earned their money this year.

As I write this little epistle the "Little Red Ship" is just off the ice horizon and we hope to greet the first of the 1981 arrivals within the next few days. It will be good to see new faces, tell stale old jokes and eat unfrozen food for a while, and of course to read mail from home.

With kind regards, Radio VLV Mawson, 1980.