Feeds

ESA seeks doctor for Antarctic spaceflight sim

13 months of cold, dark, cramped quarters a "very interesting analogue"

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

The European Space Agency (ESA) wants to interview “doctors who are not afraid of the dark” for a spaceflight research gig at one of the coldest, darkest places on earth.

The location in question is Concordia Station (location pictured below), a research facility perched at 3200m on the high Antarctic plateau. The station goes entirely without sun for four months of each year, during which temperatures plunge to horrible lows that make it impractical to leave the Station’s round buildings. To understand just how cold it gets at Concordia, this week’s temperature reached -28 celsius, yet this was declared “scorching” in the Station’s official blog.

The location of Concordia Station

Concordia Station’s location, marked by the star

The utter nastiness of Concordia’s location and environment means it cannot be reached for most of the year: incoming crew arrive in the brief summer between November and mid-February and stay for a year. All provisions must be imported during summer.

That isolation means, according to the ESA’s job ad (PDF, that “the characteristics of Concordia station make it a very interesting analogue for future human space exploration missions (isolation, confinement, autonomy requirement, limited resources etc.).” The doctor will therefore be tasked with “long-term medical, psychological and microbial monitoring” to test the effects of the harsh environment on the 12 or 13 personnel expected to spend 2013 at the station. The results of the tests will be used to inform future manned spaceflight programs.

The ESA's concordia base

Applicants will need to be a national of an ESA member, speak good English (French and Italian will be helpful) and (preferably) possess some research experience. The successful candidate won't be the Station's only doctor, but will serve as backup for the resident MD if needed.

As all staff at the base are screened for medical problems, we can only assume the backup role will be required in the case of incidents involving Shoggoths.®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Germany strikes again over Amazon warehouse pay
Employees to walk out in long-running wage dispute
Phones 4u demise: 1,700 employees laid off with redundo package
'Limited interest in remaining 362 stores', says administrator PwC
Amazon hiring in Australia for 'new and confidential Amazon Fresh initiative'
Is Jeff Bezos moving his grocery business beyond the US West Coast?
Blighty's mighty tech skills shortage drives best job growth in years
Doesn't anyone know anything about SQL? Or Java? Or Linux? Or programming? Or...
Microsoft changes cert test providers, hints at fun new exams
If you really love taking tests with Prometric, do 'em before Christmas
Symantec security chap signs for CSIRO's ICT In Schools
Vulture South is closing in on our goal of 20 new recruits to help teachers and kids
A-level results: Before you smile at that jump-for-joy snap...
Uni-ditching teens are COMING FOR YOUR JOBS
How to promote CSIRO's ICT in Schools in your community
Vulture South is closing in on its target to find volunteers to help teach tech in schools
Everyone's an IoT expert but now there's a certificate to prove it
Cisco creates Certification of Things for industrial sensor-footlers
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.