First year physics student in Antarctica

Colin Bonner, Tony Travouillon and Jon Lawrence shortly after arrival at Dome C, Antarctica.

Colin Bonner, a first year physics student at UNSW, had the opportunity of a lifetime when he was selected to accompany two UNSW astronomers to the remote Dome C station high on the Antarctic plateau.

As part of the Advanced Science program in the School of Physics, students are encouraged to work with research groups. Colin was assigned to a laboratory project in the Department of Astrophysics, where it quickly became obvious that he had very strong skills in electronics. Coincidentally, these were precisely the skills that we needed to help install a suite of new experiments in the UNSW “AASTINO” remote facility at Dome C.

Colin jumped at the opportunity. Over the 2003/4 summer break he assisted us with building instrumentation at UNSW, then accompanied Jon Lawrence and Tony Travouillon on the 5 day ocean voyage to Antarctica.

After crunching through the coastal ice on an ice-breaker, a helicopter ride, and a final trip by light aircraft, Colin became the youngest person ever to visit the Dome C station. During his three-week stay Colin was an invaluable help to our research project, which included installation of the MASS instrument.

Michael Ashley




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