Taken from sections of the Report:
The purpose of the 1998/99 Antarctic survey season was to provide survey control around Davis, Beaver Lake and the Prince Charles Mountains in support of the ANARE mapping program (ANAREMAGIP) as well as providing survey support for other ANARE science programs.
Surveyors Matt King and Rachael Manson from the Centre for Spatial Information Science, University ... of Tasmania, already travelling to Davis as part of a ASAC project, were appointed as surveyors for the 1998/99 season.
The Royal Australian Army provided Cartographer/Surveyor Lee Palfrey to assist with the survey program in the Davis region.
The Antarctic Division's Brief to Surveyors which outlines the details of the program is included in Appendix A. The survey program consisted of the following major areas:
- Photo control
- Vestfold Hills (Platcha, Ellis Narrows and Marine Plain)
- Larsemann Hills
- Beaver Lake, Pagodroma Gorge and Soyuz station
- Field checking of photogrammetric plotting
- Davis station digital map
- Vestfold Hills
- Larsemann Hills
- Providing GPS coordinates for all uncoordinated survey marks in the Vestfold Hills.
- Completion of various tasks relating to the Davis tide gauge
- Downloading and retrieval of the existing tide gauge at Davis.
- Installation of the new tide gauge at Davis.
- Timed water-level measurements.
- Precise levelling connection of the tide gauge bench marks with the ARGN GPS site at Davis.
- Third order levelling to connect the current tide gauge bench marks to those previously used by the Royal Australian Navy.*
- Lake levels within the Vestfold Hills.
- Installation of a new tide pole for Deep Lake.
- Engineering surveys at Davis
- Aerial photography of penguin colonies along the coast near Davis.*
* These tasks were not included in the original brief but were carried out at the request of the Mapping Officer during the season.
Flight lines and photo centres representing the aerial photography of penguin colonies were later created in the Australian Antarctic Data Centre. This data has Dataset_id 24 and is included in the the aerial photography data available for download (see url below).
GIS data was also created from data resulting from Matt King's survey of some features at Davis. The features include a fuel tank, some aerials, some electrical cables, some buildings, the SHIRE box (Physics apparatus) and a concrete pad. This GIS data has Dataset_id 24 and is included in the Davis GIS data available for download (see url below).
Several recommendations can be made from our experiences over the summer.
We recommend a complete inventory of all GPS base station observations be taken and summarised. After observing NMVS 4, HBM 1 and HBM 2 we found that these marks had already been observed during the 1997/98 season (Note: the latitude of NMVS4 is listed incorrectly on page 24 of the 1997/98 report). It has been proposed by the Mapping Officer that all GPS data over 2 hours in length be made available on CDROM in the future.
We further recommend that the various height datums in use in the Vestfold Hills be combined into the one datum. A least-squares adjustment of all height measurements made in the region would be a reasonably simple process (if all the data can be found!).
It is our understanding that the current differential GPS transmitter (for real time GPS corrections) at Davis is of poor quality and broadcasts broadband noise, interfering with other radio sources. As a result, the communications technicians are loathe to place the transmitter on a large antenna tower, thus significantly limiting the usefulness of real time differential GPS at Davis. If it is envisaged that real-time GPS corrections will be required in the future at Davis (or even the Vestfold Hills), this transmitter will need to be replaced.
It is widely held around station that significant errors exist in the current 1:50000 Vestfold Hills map. We are glad to hear that a new generation map is nearing completion.
Having used the Davis Science digital camera during the season, we recommend that a digital camera be regarded as an essential component of future mapping programs. It may prove beneficial if ANAREMAGIP were to purchase such a camera.