Satellite dish at Concordia

Satellite dish at Concordia Credits: A. Kumar

Alex writes: This week we celebrate midwinter. We are halfway through the darkness and on the home stretch to see the sun for the first time in four months. The northern hemisphere will celebrate midsummer this week. Opposites attract – we would love to see your photos of the Sun and your midsummer celebrations. Share them on this Flickr group.

When explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton stayed in Antarctica almost 100 years ago, he had no way to communicate with the world. Although Concordia endures the same physical isolation as Shackleton’s crew, we now have access to email and telephone via satellites.

We are pleased to hear from people from all over the world through the comments to this blog. We have even had video calls with classrooms, inspiring the next generation of explorers, adventurers and astronauts.

Keeping in contact is helping us get through our daily work and has made us look at Antarctica in new ways.

Sunset at Concordia

Our last glimpse of the Sun almost two months ago. Credits: A. Kumar

Before the last sunset we asked for ideas to survive the dark. One person recommended that people send pictures of the Sun to remind us what it looks like. We like this idea, so please send us your pictures of the Sun and your celebrations of midsummer to this Flickr group.

In return for your photos we offer readers the opportunity to send questions into the Antarctic winter, to the Concordia crew living in isolation.

I will be happy to answer questions over the coming weeks. If it is a question to do with another crew member or a speciality outside of my expertise, I will find the crew member responsible and let you know the answer.

So please write questions you have below – as a comment to this blog – and we will get back to you.
To get you started a schoolchild asked recently: “Do you eat penguins?” We do not, Concordia is around 3200 metres above sea level, too high for penguins…