Episode Six of The IcePod with Taneil Uttal – Measuring the Zeros

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Episode Six of The IcePod with Taneil Uttal – Measuring the Zeros

Kirstin Werner
Dear Colleagues, 

For the sixth episode, The IcePod went overseas where we connected with Taneil Uttal in Boulder, Colorado. Taneil is a meteorologist at NOAA, the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. To join the second leg of MOSAiC, Taneil didn't have to do anything but hire Matt Shupe – MOSAiC's co-lead – many years ago. How smart it sometimes can be to hire young people! 

Taneil Uttal and Anja Sommerfeld from the fifth episode of The IcePod were the female atmospheric force during the darkest hours of the MOSAiC sea-ice drift. As the leader of the Atmospheric Team, Taneil felt it was her main job to make everybody else's job easy. As she was standing on an ice floe in the middle of Arctic nowhere in darkness, hearing the same humming noise of the atmospheric surface flux station she once heard in hot-summer Colorado made her feel they had built a space shuttle that landed on another planet. Leg 2 being the only fully sun-free period of the expedition, it provided Taneil with the best opportunities to observe the most extreme conditions in the Arctic, and to measure all the 'zeros' during darkness. 

Science makes just one (fulfilling) part of a scientist; there is more, and much more to Taneil. Spending the morning hours in Polarstern's red salon, Taneil volunteered for the leg 2 entry on the ship's guestbook – the whole lot of her impressions from the central Arctic she pieced together into a colourful vibrant drawing. If you're getting curious now (and you should!) check out the next PolarPredictNews newsletter out by the end of October.

As a senior scientist, Taneil is now very much looking forward to retire, "to be a scientist" as she says. For the remainder at NOAA, she aims to "make herself obsolete in order to build a team of people" that are going to continue her work.

Find the new and all previous IcePod episodes e.g. on Spotify, Apple Podcast, Castbox (no sign-up needed) or on our website theicepodcast.home.blog

If you miss the music, find the very special playlist that Taneil created on Spotify.

The episode with music is also played at https://www.medialabnord.de/radio-livestream/ (Bremerhaven) on

Saturday, 3 October 2020, 12–2 pm UTC

For updates and other materials, check also our website: https://theicepodcast.home.blog/

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The IcePod is the podcast about polar science and the people. We’ll talk to scientists who went on board Polarstern, the German research icebreaker, for the biggest research expedition in the Arctic. It is produced in collaboration with the Alfred Wegener Institute and Radio Weser.TV where the full episode with music will be played at www.medialabnord.de/radio-livestream/. For dates check back with [hidden email].



Editorial responsibility: Kirstin Werner and Sara Pasqualetto 


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