Craving for cold isolation – research doctor rotation in Antarctica

Did you know the largest desert in the world is also the coldest place in the world? In the heart of Antarctica, where temperatures can drop to –80°C, life is so hard there is no life to be found as even bacteria cannot survive.

Travel 1300 km from the coast and you will pass very little except white plains as far as the eye can see, until the remote outpost of the Italian-French research base Concordia. Over 600 km from the nearest living beings (the Russian station Vostok), the French and Italian polar institutes house up to 15 people in Concordia to study glaciology, astronomy and the climate in this unique location far from civilisation.

The location is so remote and alien that ESA sends a research medical doctor each year to study the crew, as what they experience is similar to a crew on a lunar base including lower oxygen levels, no sunlight for extended periods, no possibility of rescue, confinement and going outside requires preparation.

ESA’s current medical doctor, Nadja Albertsen from Denmark, has survived her stay in the cold and welcomed the return of sunlight. The crew are preparing for the arrival of fresh supplies and the “Summer scientists” that flock to Antarctica in the warmer months.

ESA is now looking for next year’s medical doctor to start training and take over the baton from Stijn for the winter 2021. If you are from an ESA Member State, have medical degree and are looking for an adventure you will never forget, apply for the position at the link below



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Oprettet d: 12/11/2019
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