The Polar Pumpkin – Art Mortvedt And Polar Exploration | Aero-News Network
Aero-News Network
RSS icon RSS feed
podcast icon MP3 podcast
Subscribe Aero-News e-mail Newsletter Subscribe

Airborne Unlimited -- Most Recent Daily Episodes

Episode Date

Airborne-Monday

Airborne-Tuesday

Airborne-Wednesday Airborne-Thursday

Airborne-Friday

Airborne On YouTube

Airborne Unlimited-11.29.21

Airborne-UnManned-11.30.21

Airborne-Unlimited-12.01.21

Airborne-Flight Training-11.18.21

Airborne Unlimited-12.03.21

ANN LIVE Coverage of AEA 2021 Is Archived at www.airborne-live.net

Mon, Jul 27, 2009

The Polar Pumpkin – Art Mortvedt And Polar Exploration

Using A Single Engine Aircraft On Polar Scientific Expeditions

By Chris Batcheller

If polar expeditions to study photosynthetic cyanobacteria in the earth cryosphere doesn’t sound like something that you’ll find at Oshkosh ... well read on. An incredible aviator is turning science into an adventure.

Art Mortvedt

Art Mortvedt is that extraordinary aviator. He operates a lodge in Alaska where the norm is quiet wilderness, cracked with the occasional rumble of a seaplane delivering hunters and adventurers into the wilderness.  His passions include science, and he proves that you don’t have to be a university scholar to make a significant contribution to the scientific community. 

Art has worked on over twenty plus expeditions to the Antarctic, the southern pole. Along on those missions was a bright Orange Cessna 185, nicknamed the “The Polar Pumpkin”.  A few years ago the Polar Pumpkin came up for sale, and Art became the proud new owner.  Determined to not let the Polar Pumpkin rest long from its mission, Art is planning a new adventure to the geographic north pole to study photosynthetic caynobacteria.  When Art completes his mission the Polar Pumpkin will have landed on both poles.  A feat that few, if any airplanes can claim.

Why study this stuff ... photo cyano what?  These bacteria can live for a really, really long time in the ice.   Studying this simple living organism will help unlock secrets to global warming and to life on Mars.  But don’t think Art is growing this stuff on his kitchen table in a Petri dish. He wants to learn about it from a birds eye view.   Enter the Laser Induced Fluorescent Emissions or L.I.F.E. camera.  With this emerging piece of technology Art can fly above the ice and gather data on the bacteria without having to disturb the environment.  This technology is also planned for use on future Mars missions.

Art isn’t going at this alone.  He has assembled a team of world experts, including Dr. Birgit Sattler of the University of Innsbruck in Austria, an expert on photosynthetic caynobacteria.  Dr. Michael Storrie-Lombardi of the Kinohi Institute, USA, an expert on the L.I.F.E. camera, is also on the team. 

To develop the methods to use the L.I.F.E. camera from the air, Art and Dr. Storrie-Lombardi flew low level in a Citabria over the Alaskan Tundra last May.  Dr. Storriee-Lombardi was able to look at the images as they are taken, giving feedback to Art to adjust his flying on the fly. 

Art plans on flying the Polar Pumpkin to the North Pole next April with the L.I.F.E. camera.  Logistics of a mission like this are complicated and take years to plan. Things like positioning fuel on a Russian polar outpost are the norm. While on his mission Art hopes to demonstrate the practicality of a ski equipped single engine airplane to polar science.  Images from the L.I.F.E. camera will be sent back to Dr. Sattler and Dr. Storriee-Lombardi for analysis. 

You can find Art and the bright orange Polar Pumpkin next to the Grimes Aviation Light Lab Beech 18 and next to Diamond Aircraft. Stop by and ask him about some of his aerial adventures.

FMI: www.polarflight90.com 

Advertisement

More News

ANN's Daily Aero-Linx (12.02.21)

Aero Linx: Office of Aerospace Medicine, Civil Aerospace Medical Institute (CAMI) The FAA Civil Aerospace Medical Institute (CAMI) is the medical certification, research, education>[...]

ANN FAQ: Turn On Post Notifications

Make Sure You NEVER Miss A New Story From Aero-News Network Do you ever feel like you never see posts from a certain person or page on Facebook or Instagram? Here’s how you c>[...]

ANN's Daily Aero-Term (12.02.21): Scheduled Time Of Arrival (STA)

Scheduled Time Of Arrival (STA) A STA is the desired time that an aircraft should cross a certain point (landing or metering fix). It takes other traffic and airspace configuration>[...]

ANN's Daily Aero-Linx (12.03.21)

Aero Linx: The Soaring Association of Canada (SAC) The Soaring Association of Canada (SAC) is the governing body for the sport of gliding in Canada. Mandated to safeguard and promo>[...]

Airborne-Flight Training 12.02.21: Sonaca 200, MSFS Volocopter, Int'l Test Pilot

Also: USAF Extends Rated Prep Program, Micro Drones UAV Sim, Drone Awareness, ERAU Scholarship Flight School Promotion will receive its first Sonaca 200 Trainer Pro shortly. The So>[...]

blog comments powered by Disqus



Advertisement

Advertisement

Podcasts

Advertisement

© 2007 - 2021 Web Development & Design by Pauli Systems, LC