Although I'm just not announcing my deployment, I have been preparing for the ice for several months. In order to go to Antarctica (through NSF or contractor work), all participants must pass a vigorous medical and dental screening. Antarctica is a remote place and medical emergencies are a serious concern. Doctors are on site at all times, but the medical infrastructure and equipment is just not available in these remote places. To reduce the chance of someone having a serious health emergency, all participants go through this medical screening. The screening includes a full blood panel to check to make sure we're all healthy, a physical exam by a doctor and a dental examination. Once a doctor has examined all the testing and dental x-rays, a participant passes the "PQ" process - Physical Qualification.
Now that I've passed my PQ screening, I'm ready to start packing and getting ready for my journey to the South Pole! I've already shipped a large box of snacks to myself. It takes several weeks to a few months to get packages in the mail to Antarctica, especially in the beginning of the summer season when the priority of flights is for transportation of people on and off the ice and for shipments of scientific cargo and essential supplies (food, etc.).
Until next time,