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Temperature straight from Vostok

There are places on earth whose very name makes us feel anxious; wild, dangerous, unconquered. There are places on earth that delight us with their otherness and unique atmosphere. There are also places that we would like to see, have the opportunity to be there even for a moment, feel the prevailing atmosphere for a second. We heard about them on the radio, watched documents on TV, read articles. They delight and terrify us at the same time. Huge deserts dancing with the wind, extremely dangerous during the day, shrouded in coldness and starry skies at night. The icy ends of the world, still fully unexplored, accessible only to a few. This is what today’s entry is about. We lower the temperature a few huge lines below zero. However, to protect you from thermal shock, I would like to stop for a moment under the scorching California sun – in The Death Valley.

Huge, almost 8 km2  in the Mojave Desert, Death Valley is the greatest depression in North America, while being the driest place in America and the hottest place on earth. The sum of rainfall does not exceed 50mm per year (rainless years have also been recorded). During warm seasons the ground heats up to 100°C (you could try making eggs and bacon 😊) and the humidity is around 1% – a real pan right? The record air temperature was 56.7°C. Death Valley became a national monument of the United States in 1933 and a national park in 1994.

 

Okay then, so let’s move to Antarctica.

The southernmost continent on Earth. Dry, unpleasant and extremely cold. Such dangerous conditions mean that Antarctica has no permanent inhabitants. The only people that periodically inhabit this winter desert are researchers. Currently, about 80 stations are stationed there, half are open all year round and half are available only in the summer.

So let’s move to one of them, to Vostok – the coldest place on earth. Vostok is a year-round Russian-owned polar station located in the far eastern part of Antarctica. About thirteen workers are there. Interestingly, under the ice sheet on which the station is built, there is the largest subglacial lake on the continent – Lake Vostok, which is the subject of scientists research.

 

 

Vostok in POL-EKO?

The average air temperature in this area is −55.4°C. The lowest temperature in the world was also recorded here! -89.2°C to be exact. The station was founded in 1957 and is still active.

It seems that spending at least one day in such a place would be an absolutely amazing experience and it’s hard to disagree that probably everyone would like to experience it.

By producing low-temperature freezers, we have this unique opportunity to admire the operation of devices in an atmosphere similar to the conditions in Antarctica. Walking through the production hall, you can feel on your own skin a substitute for the powerful frost that is trying to get out of the working chambers.

ZLN-UT allow for deep freezing and long-term storage of biotechnological samples. They are based on modern SMART controllers, the operation of which is simple and intuitive. They will also enable constant control of work via LabDesk software. The working chambers can be equipped with specially designed racks that can accommodate almost 30,000 samples! Optionally it is possible to buy an additional CO2  emergency system and a spare controller battery – which is activated in the event of a power failure. The temperature range reached by the device is up to -86°C!

Our own mini Vostok… But let’s be honest… This is just the tip of the iceberg compared to the unmatched power of nature that surrounds us, which we will probably never be able to contain.

Maciej Lebioda

Maciej Lebioda

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