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Hot spot in cold spot - paratroopers link to the internet from drifting ice floe near North Pole

By The Siberian Times reporter
09 April 2014

More than 50 servicemen in air drop close to Russia's drifting ice base Barneo.

The paratroopers are on an operation jointly with the command of the Russian Air Force Military Transport Aviation and the Expedition Centre of the Russian Geographic Society. Picture: Vesti.ru

The world's most northerly web link was set up by airborne troops after their historic jump from an  Ilyushin Il-76 military transport aircraft. It is said to be the first-ever jump onto drifting ice close to the North Pole. 

'More than 50 servicemen were airdropped from an Ilyushin Il-76 military transport aircraft not far from Russia's drifting ice base Barneo [at 89 degrees North] with the use of the Arbalet-2 special-purpose parachute system,' said Airborne Forces spokesman Lt Col Yevgeny Meshkov.

Material supplies and cargo mounted on platforms free-fell from the Il-76 jet onto the ice to support the landing operation, he said, as reported by Interfax-AVN.

'Despite the complex weather conditions - unmarked terrain, a high density of ice hummocks and a lack of visible horizon - the landing and the cargo airdrop were normal and there were no accidents or injuries of the personnel', he said. 

More than 50 servicemen in air drop close to  Russia's drifting ice base Barneo.

More than 50 servicemen were airdropped from an Ilyushin Il-76 military transport aircraft not far from Russia's drifting ice base Barneo. Picture: Vesti.ru

The paratroopers successfully put in place a mobile point that allowed for steady space signal and access to internet in what must be the hot spot nearest the top of the world. The paratroopers are on an operation jointly with the command of the Russian Air Force Military Transport Aviation and the Expedition Centre of the Russian Geographic Society.

With them jumped Chaplain Archpriest Savva - a churchmen held in deep respect by servicemen. This was his 751st jump. 

The Arbalet-2 special purpose parachute system is tailored for jumps with a cargo container of up to 50 kilograms from transport jets moving at a speed of up to 400 kilometres per hour. Since 2002, Barneo Research Station is set up annually by the Russian Geographical Society on an ice floe at a latitude of around 89 degrees north, approximately 110 km (68.4 miles) from the North Pole. 

Normally, it opens in early April and operates for about a month.

The polar base has an airfield for light transport aircraft such as Antonov An-74 and landing sites for Mil Mi-8 helicopters.

Comments (1)

is there internet access exactly at the north pole, info@drhait.info
Dr. John Hait, Prescott, AZ USA
14/08/2014 01:46
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