2 Oct SCO-CPS Call

Jack, Matt, Bob Paul, Jesse

Starting with an update on GLT from Paul. Waiting for a meeting between the main players. Pretty much no change since last meeting.

Paul on updates for LRP. Currently Kevin has been out, no news to report.

Hannah and Lance (incoming science techs) came to do training with UNAVCO, should be good to go with using the UNAVCO equipment for surveys. Matt is interested in getting them to train the other ops people to do the surveys that might need to be done.

Also going to NOAA for training, sounds like there are some issues with the met station, but there is a plan in place for when the new techs come in. Getting ready to do O3 sonde launches.

Matt’s looking at places to test a potential structure for the Neely LiDAR. Best to test it out stateside before bringing it to Summit. Some discussion of how much temperature fluctuation can be accepted in transit; can we assemble the optical table in the SOB and transport it 200m?

Matt’s been talking with Matt Shupe about a charter flight for parts, last flight opportunity according to Nordlandair is 10 November.

Station has recently been having some large power fluctuations- between 47 and 58 kW as a load. Not sure what is pulling all that load. Matt thinks its close to the mid 40s in the winter. 58 is higher than what Gen2 can handle. Some discussions about the general power consumption at Summit, and how we might be able to reduce that load.

Matt is headed up to Summit Thursday, for transition and should be back by Thursday of the next week.

We then discussed the question of any topics that are key in the discussion for next week when we talk about new projects being proposed for APP4. One key item is a railing for the GreenHouse roof. Jack asked if there was any motion on science traverse capability, the idea of the traverse module/mobile camp. Looks like CPS may have $2-4M less than last year..

Call ended at 10:37am.

18 Sept SCO/CPS call

Paul, Matt, Jack, John, Bob attending

Update from telescope team. There is a meeting coming up, and hopefully more will be established about what is happening- sounds like the full budget is now known, and now the telescope (Smithsonian) folks need to find other partners to get the needed funding. Still planning to set up the telescope for initial work at CRREL in Hanover, then work to move it to Summit. Looking at the CRREL installation as a first step. Not looking at any definite schedule bump now, but some concerns were raised about the speed with which resources would need to be ramped up in order to keep to the schedule.

Matt gave updates from Kevin (ISI site planning) who’s not present. Discussing elevation and how to keep the drifting down. Initial schedule now calls for individual buildings to be elevated as they arrive onsite, rather than a single large platform on which buildings are erected. Hope to have a plan for circulation to SCO in the next week or so. Most buildings elevated, but a couple will be at surface level- notably the garage and a surface science facility for balloon launch. Still looking at the large platform concept, but probably a secondary plan.

Matt’s updates- NASA contacted SCO and CPS about a borehole proposal for 2017. This is one that SCO does know about, communications are sometimes tricky with different people cc’d in different places, and multiple project staff contacting CPS directly. Project wants to drill close to the GISP2 hole, we discussed the difficulties of placing them 50 meters from the hole- figured that 500 m would be easier and difficult to discern a solid science reason for being that close.

Meeting with FEMCO about Neely project, feasibility of sending up a structure to house the optics. Seems a challenge at the moment while we are setting up a new ISI station, to put another one-off structure up there, but things are moving forward with at least a quote. The project is moving forward with mock-ups in Boulder. Jack urged Matt to do his best to convince Ryan and Mike that they would be well served to request the space they truly need, resisting temptation for scope and space (cost) creep. There are several reasons that the new system won’t co-exist well in the MSF, including safety (eye-safety for the laser), climate control (new laser requires a significant temperature stability that will be a challenge to achieve), and simply space with the existing equipment in the MSF. There was also a discussion of the eye-safety of the laser, how it may affect flight operations.

Discussion from Jessy’s updates on the Vieregg project. Jack asks where exactly the installation wants to be. Needs to be away from RF interference, but still get power from Greenhouse or Bighouse. Data acquisition gear would be in the house as well. NSF has approved that if she finds non-NSF funding, she can work there and CPS will direct bill her for support.

Looking at a possible mid-November flight for critical parts for the TWTA- Twin Otter from Iceland.

Discussion of the SCO outbrief. Many of the aspects of the outbrief are actually not that applicable to our project, but we had some feedback for CPS.

Final point, the discussion of the amount of packaging that gets shipped to Greenland- there is a great deal of packaging relative to the amount of actual materials. Could there be some system of repackaging things that are going to Greenland so that the packaging materials can be recycled stateside?

Call concluded at 11:20 local.

4 Sept SCO/CPS call

Telescope update: The telescope has been working on an estimate for the telescope project, which was finished in the preceding week. The telescope group met with ALEX for a follow-up meeting. The planned ASIAA/SOA meeting is now scheduled for mid-Oct.

LRP update: The Summit/Isi site plan is being finalized with minor adjustments to areas on the plan that have been designated clean air/non clean air. CPS has discussed the implications of moving the skiway with ANG.

There has been one estimate produced for the Mobile Garage, which came out higher than the $750k cap when associated costs are factored in. CPS has been asked to prioritize upgrades to Isi, and to write a project engineering document (which is similar to a charter) to document each sub-project. The plan CPS was considering was to procure modules, put them on the snow at first, then elevate the buildings (on legs) as more funds become available. SCO raised a few concerns with this approach, as we are very reluctant to have surface structures be put in place in the fear that funding will not be available to raise the structures. One idea that has been resurrected is a previous Model (2 or 3) which consisted of first building a large platform, and then placing the current structures on the platform (following the Neumeyer station example).

We also discussed the SUPR lidar project, as the project is requesting a separate building to be constructed/procured for the instrument. We were given a sketch of the proposed building, which could be brought up to Summit in a Herc. There was some discussion about whether one of the existing small science buildings (FLUX or the Bally Building) could be used instead. Related, the temperature in MSF has been stabilized through work done during the summer.

SCO updates: We are planning tagging a GEOSummit meeting onto the NOAA GMAC meeting, which is planned for May 19 and 20, most probably planning for the GeoSummit meeting to take place on May 21. Matt gave us the heads’ up on a NASA drilling project that is being proposed for Summit. We had a few questions (i.e. if core was going to be recovered, if it was a new drilling system, where the project wanted to be located, etc.), but no major concerns about the project.

21 Aug. SCO/CPS call

Matt O, Jack, John, Zoe

On this call, we discussed the upcoming 109th planning meeting (Oct 6-9). Last year, it was very beneficial to attend, both in terms of learning 109th schedules and needs in terms of Raven, as well as current airport constraints, and plans from the Danes for future science locations that could require 109th support. An action item is for SCO to determine who will attend the meeting, with hopefully at least one of us being able to go for some of the meeting.

We also discussed the Isi site plan, which Jack, Kevin, Brian and NSF/ALEX had worked on 20 Aug. There is a new draft site plan that should be circulated soon. NASA needs to be included, and Zoe took an action item to contact the NASA Icesat2 team to see if they would like to participate in next Thurs’s meeting, or to have SCO represent their concerns.

Jack updated us on the status of the microturbines and prime movers for the generators that have been delivered to Summit, as well as the current state of the snow drifts around the station since the D6 has been out of service. There is considerable concern that the amount of snow present around Summit is beyond that which can be moved without an additional piece of heavy equipment that can move snow. Zoe took another action item to inquire if the Summit drift surveys can be used to estimate the volume of snow that is currently present in the station.

Camp staff have been checking out the virtual tour and the GIS that SCO has been working on. There are requests for Zoe to add photos of TAWO and more representative photos of the SOB (the current SOB panorama is from 2011, when SOB was bright, shiny and level); Zoe has these tasks as action items. The GIS is a big hit, and all agree that historical data should be incorporated into it.

24 July SCO/CPS meeting

Jessy, Kevin, Paul, Bob, Zoe and Jack attending

Kevin reported on his recent trip to Summit, which he clearly felt was very informative. He was on station for 4 days so got good briefing on all the infrastructure, and spent a lot of time with Dave and staff thinking about how the transition from SOB to the new mobile garage with separate power/water module and a stand-alone surface science facility would actually be executed.  Key challenge is how to maintain essential functions during the actual move.  Per the current schedule, this will still happen in summer 2016 but is contingent on getting the mobile garage design and procurement processes into high gear this year.

Paul gave an executive summary of the GLT/NSF/CPS meetings that happened in early July (he had earlier shared minutes with SCO). In his view the most significant decision was that GLT will need to find the financial resources to procure and deploy all infrastructure that is needed to construct and operate the telescope.  This direction is in response to the uncertainty regarding RSL capital budgets from year to year, making it nearly impossible to plan, fund and deploy shared resources.  While this may mean that some opportunities for efficiency through shared infrastructure will be missed, it should also mean that GLT and RSL can make progress on installing the telescope and redeveloping Summit, respectively, as their own resources allow.

Paul also announced that Roberto had a great opportunity that he could not pass up and would be leaving SAO on 6 Aug. While happy for Roberto, we will miss him.

Jack asked how the new model with GLT and Isi advancing sort of independently might impact transport from the coast to Summit (especially via GrIT but possibly also via Hercs)? Specifically, if the two schedules collided in a way that resulted in way too much “critical” cargo in Thule in a certain year, how would GrIT prioritize, or how would the 2 groups decide what was the priority for GrIT?  Paul said that right now the funding and schedules appear to mesh reasonably well, with RSL likely to dominate GrIT demand in 2016 (SOB replacement), and the GLT group planning to move all of their oversize cargo in 2017 and 2018 (coinciding with a point in the Isi schedule heavy with design/procurement/and transport to Thule; but little cargo all the way to Summit).  However, Paul also noted that the cargo GLT hopes to move in both 2017 and 2018 is approximately twice the capacity of GrIT if the current mode of a single trip with 4 tractors is maintained.  Could be strong motivation for the split fleet mode of operation for GrIT.  Jack asked if this implied that AWO was now delayed until 2019 at earliest, Kevin and Paul confirmed.

While not discussed on the call today, the likely GrIT bottleneck in many of the next several years also implies increased reliance on Hercs to deliver fuel (meeting minutes referred to above do state that it is assumed that all fuel will be flown in to Summit, at least through development phase). At some point this will require the number of flights per season to increase, perhaps by a lot. (In a presentation Kevin made at the traverse workshop he estimated that approximately 40 flights per year would be required just for fuel from 2019 onward, compared to recent average of 17 flights/season.  Of course, the fuel use estimates need to be validated and refined.)

Bob asked whether the separation of financial responsibility raised the prospect that the GLT and Isi might turn into neighbors with 2 separate managements. Paul feels that SAO does not really want to operate a remote camp and assume all responsibility for life support, SAR, etc.; rather they would like to operate a telescope at a remote camp operated by NSF and seem willing to pay some form of user fee to support these other functions.

Jessy turned the call to Summit updates: biggest news is that the BH lift is on track to happen tomorrow (25 July), and that the VSAT upgrade will require that Summit be off the internet for several days next week (details were provided in an email from SRI to the community shortly after the call). She also noted that another medevac was required on 21 July to move a staff member to hospital in Iceland.  Replacement person was transported to Summit today.  We believe this brings the total number of people evacuated from Summit this season to 7, which is well above normal and probably a record.  Jessy also noted that some material needed for the ventilation upgrade in TAWO did not arrive this FP, but the construction crew has a plan to do most of the job over the next 3 weeks and complete it during FP 6 when the parts should be on hand.  Jessy also reported that following the 21 July SuPR meeting Ryan Neely and CPS were leaning toward asking NSF if deployment could be delayed one year, with operation extended out to 2018.  The project is clearly more complex than either the PIs or CPS realized, and more time for planning the best solution could be valuable.

We discussed all of the unplanned flights this summer, and also the concern that keeping news about the medevacs under tight wraps risked proliferation of poorly informed rumors (see comments near the end of the 22 July SCO call).  Jessy said that even within CPS the information about mishaps was not widely shared, and in some cases probably needed to be more available.  She noted that she only learned about the 21 July Summit medevac when she saw that Summit was giving aviation weather reports on a day when no flight was scheduled.  She also mentioned a flood event that caused injury to researcher near Kanger this season.  Someone from the victim’s institution called the office seeking more information, and no one nearby the phone knew what they were talking about.  We are sure that many folks within CPS had detailed knowledge of the incident, and that they responded well, but it would seem appropriate to provide enough information to the larger group (while protecting privacy of the victim) so that anyone asked about it would at least know who they should refer the questioner to.

We mentioned the RSL safety workshop that Bob and Jack attended and noted that there had been a lot of very interesting discussion about instituting a “near miss” debriefing as policy. Idea was basically that open sharing of episodes that could have resulted in tragedy, but fortunately did not, should help others avoid approaching similar near misses.  Jessy said that she was sure there would be discussions along these lines within CPS.  SCO offered to assist in any way possible or desired.


10 July. CPS and SCO

attending: Jessy, Kevin, Zoe and Jack

Kevin began with update on GLRP.  He noted that he had made a presentation at the traverse workshop outlining a schedule for creation of Isi and installation of GLT there, primarily to outline the loads (fuel and especially pieces of new buildings and the telescope) that GrIT should anticipate needing to deliver.  (Zoe saw this presentation.) This schedule assumed a fixed capital budget of $4M/year out to 2020.  He noted that spreading the funds out over longer interval would cause the schedule to slip as well, and that he was now working on a new plan and schedule that assumed funds would flow at a rate of $2M/year.  Kevin closed by noting that he was heading to Summit 13 July and would be mainly out of touch for several weeks.

Jessy then provided updates on science, DV and operational events that are planned between now and the end of summer season at Summit.  It will be busy!

SCO confirmed that Jack would be participating in the end of season site visit (tentative plans had John making this trip, but his teaching schedule will not allow).  We also reminded Jessy that Bob was in Greenland now, and might be in Kanger several days waiting for return flight to CONUS.  We all agreed that it would be good for Bob to visit Summit, perhaps just on a turn around, if his schedule and the Herc schedules allow.

Jessy mentioned that there would be a 1-day workshop focused on how to support Neely’s SuPR Lidar on 21 July, and invited SCO to participate.  It seems unlikely that any of us will travel to Denver, but we will try to join on-line.


26 June. SCO/PFS call

Kevin updated SCO regarding GLRP.  The conceptual designs and ideas have been shared with ALEX and NSF and will be shared with the GLRP group as a whole on the next call.  The major core module will take a year to develop.  The current schedule has dramatic impacts on GrIT, as it will require triple the amount of cargo GrIT current carries.  The basic development plan is for the telescope to provide its own power, berthing and fuel storage.  Essentially there would be 2 camps at the same place, with the telescope personnel making up half of the camp population (~6-8 people).  The building would be more traditional (i.e. not like the AWO design) with infinite legs or on skis.  The power for the new station is estimated to be 175-200 kW, which does not include the telescope.

We discussed the upcoming NASA over-flight; Jack was going to check if it was an atmospheric flight.  We talked about the annual SCO Summit site visit, and tentatively planned for one of us to go in August during station close.  The DISC borehole was also discussed.  The HEO’s have not been driving over it, but it is becoming buried.  The solution to preserving the borehole for future use (i.e. the Vieregg project should it be funded) is to install a 16 ft post and to have the HEO’s continue to avoid it.  It might end up as a hole.  Other Summit updates include that the construction manager is planning on removing the Noone box, and the GIS updating is progressing well.

12 June. SCO/PFS call

attending: Kevin, Katrine, Paul, Dave, Zoe, Jack

Kevin gave updates on Greenland Long Range Planning.  The bridging documents are proceeding with validation from Martin Lewis’s trip to Summit.  CPS has had internal meetings regarding the power concept, and the transition from the current to the final power configuration.  CPS is working on a document that summarizes the concept. Jack discussed the idea that we discussed 4 June, which consists of 2 different power plants, 1 for the telescope and 1 for the camp, which would back each other up and be tied together.  SCO would like to see smart system design so that RE can be integrated into the grid from the beginning.

Paul updated us on the telescope.  The telescope group is currently working through work packages.  A discussion of developments is scheduled for 1 July involving NSF, SAO and CPS in DC to discuss budgets for such items as the crane, power, the telehandler, etc.   CPS is slated to pick up with contracting after the telescope is disassembled (current plans have the telescope assembled during the upcoming spring in Hanover, NH at CRREL).

NOAA updates from Katrine include that the maximum distance that NOAA wants the new AWO is 1000m from the generator module (this following discussion of exactly how far away TAWO is from Summit Station now, and what landmark is used as “Summit”).

Other Summit updates from Katrine are that the Petrenko group believes they can reach all their science objectives, and are currently working in two 10 hour shifts in order to make up for delays.  Katrine got a tour of the new berthing module, which was delivered by GrIT, which consists of 4 rooms, with 8 bunks.  She believes that it is a 9kW load, but it is not metered.  The construction crew is currently using it.

29 May. SCO/PFS Call

attending: Dave, Katrine, Kevin, Jessy, Zoe, John, Bob
Kevin updated SCO on GLRP developments.  The mobile garage report should be done in 1 week, and we will review on the GLRP call. CPS is working on the confirming the viability of the design.
The Isi charrette report is progressing.  Kevin will send out an action item list with names assigned to various tasks soon.  CPS is working on a site plan to show all the site configurations. Paul reported that there is little to report on the telescope.  The telescope team is focused on working through the costs that were brought up during the telescope-focused meeting in Denver.
Katrine updated SCO on the Phase II crew, currently in Denver.  Katrine and Jessy are going up to help with turnover.  The replacement for the Summit station science manager is being sought, in the meantime, Jessy will help out with that role.  Bob asked about the tasking of the fleet coordination personnel recently brought on at Summit.  Katrine will follow up with Tracy about his role.