Arctic Trucks Found a New Route Across Antarctica

Almost 1000 miles across crevasses and an unexpected amount of ice melt to find a new way to drive along the Fimbul ice shelf.

The polar explorer who guided Hyundai across Antarctica, Emil Grimsson, took his company on a challenge to find a new route along the Fimbul ice shelf.

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<p>Over 8 months in route planning, analyzing data and risk-assessment were necessary to establish a potentially safe supply path between the landing point of the icebreaker vessel and Whichaway Camp in Antarctica.<span class="redactor-invisible-space" data-verified="redactor" data-redactor-tag="span" data-redactor-class="redactor-invisible-space"></span></p>

Over 8 months in route planning, analyzing data and risk-assessment were necessary to establish a potentially safe supply path between the landing point of the icebreaker vessel and Whichaway Camp in Antarctica.

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<p>
White Desert, the luxury tour operator of this camp, commissioned Arctic Trucks to provide vehicles and expert support to establish a land route for a future supply line. The team studied almost 1000 miles&nbsp;with a main focus on finding a safe route along the ice shelf.&nbsp;<span class="redactor-invisible-space" data-verified="redactor" data-redactor-tag="span" data-redactor-class="redactor-invisible-space"></span></p>

White Desert, the luxury tour operator of this camp, commissioned Arctic Trucks to provide vehicles and expert support to establish a land route for a future supply line. The team studied almost 1000 miles with a main focus on finding a safe route along the ice shelf. 

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<p>No vehicles had traveled this route before. The main challenge was&nbsp;finding a new route across&nbsp;crevasses&nbsp;and the Jutulstraumen, an ice flow that moves up to 13 feet&nbsp;per day through otherwise slow moving ice shelf.<span class="redactor-invisible-space" data-verified="redactor" data-redactor-tag="span" data-redactor-class="redactor-invisible-space"></span></p>

No vehicles had traveled this route before. The main challenge was finding a new route across crevasses and the Jutulstraumen, an ice flow that moves up to 13 feet per day through otherwise slow moving ice shelf.

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<p>The Arctic Trucks team was faced with an unexpected amount of ice melt, but they managed to successfully navigate the situation, handling their vehicles with extreme caution.<span class="redactor-invisible-space" data-verified="redactor" data-redactor-tag="span" data-redactor-class="redactor-invisible-space"></span></p>

The Arctic Trucks team was faced with an unexpected amount of ice melt, but they managed to successfully navigate the situation, handling their vehicles with extreme caution.

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<p>Arctic Trucks built&nbsp;on decades of experience traveling in crevassed areas in Iceland and having&nbsp;pioneered a route from NOVO ice runway up along the Shcherbakov mountain range up to the Antarctica high plateau in Queen Maud Land.<span class="redactor-invisible-space" data-verified="redactor" data-redactor-tag="span" data-redactor-class="redactor-invisible-space"></span></p>

Arctic Trucks built on decades of experience traveling in crevassed areas in Iceland and having pioneered a route from NOVO ice runway up along the Shcherbakov mountain range up to the Antarctica high plateau in Queen Maud Land.

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<p>Using satellite data and the latest GPR (Ground Penetrating Radar) the expedition collected 11GB of scanning data, documented suggestions for further operational improvements and also took unique photography and video footage.&nbsp;</p>

Using satellite data and the latest GPR (Ground Penetrating Radar) the expedition collected 11GB of scanning data, documented suggestions for further operational improvements and also took unique photography and video footage. 

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<p>The data has already been made available to University of Iceland and will be shared with the the scientific community.<span class="redactor-invisible-space" data-verified="redactor" data-redactor-tag="span" data-redactor-class="redactor-invisible-space"></span></p>

The data has already been made available to University of Iceland and will be shared with the the scientific community.

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<p>The expedition used two Arctic Trucks AT44, one 4x4 and one 6x6.<span class="redactor-invisible-space" data-verified="redactor" data-redactor-tag="span" data-redactor-class="redactor-invisible-space"></span></p>

The expedition used two Arctic Trucks AT44, one 4x4 and one 6x6.

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<p>The vehicles are re-engineered Toyota Hiluxes, fitted with very large low air-pressure tires. This setup has now successfully recorded 172,000 miles driven in Antarctica.&nbsp;<span class="redactor-invisible-space" data-verified="redactor" data-redactor-tag="span" data-redactor-class="redactor-invisible-space"></span></p>

The vehicles are re-engineered Toyota Hiluxes, fitted with very large low air-pressure tires. This setup has now successfully recorded 172,000 miles driven in Antarctica. 

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<p>For this type of operations the Arctic Trucks vehicles travel about three&nbsp;times faster and use about 1/6th of the fuel the common belt vehicles that are being used in Antarctica<span class="redactor-invisible-space" data-verified="redactor" data-redactor-tag="span" data-redactor-class="redactor-invisible-space">.</span></p>

For this type of operations the Arctic Trucks vehicles travel about three times faster and use about 1/6th of the fuel the common belt vehicles that are being used in Antarctica.

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<p>This allows for huge cost savings in fuel and more scientific research to be conducted during the season. In addition, it leads to a big reduction of the Co2 emissions and has been proven very reliable<span class="redactor-invisible-space" data-verified="redactor" data-redactor-tag="span" data-redactor-class="redactor-invisible-space">.</span></p>

This allows for huge cost savings in fuel and more scientific research to be conducted during the season. In addition, it leads to a big reduction of the Co2 emissions and has been proven very reliable.

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<p>Arctic Trucks have already supplied vehicles to Indian, German, Swedish, Finnish&nbsp;and Chinese&nbsp;Antarctica programs.<span class="redactor-invisible-space" data-verified="redactor" data-redactor-tag="span" data-redactor-class="redactor-invisible-space"></span></p>

Arctic Trucks have already supplied vehicles to Indian, German, Swedish, Finnish and Chinese Antarctica programs.

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<p>The trucks are running Jet A1 fuel, which keeps flowing all the way down to -72 degrees Fahrenheit.</p>

The trucks are running Jet A1 fuel, which keeps flowing all the way down to -72 degrees Fahrenheit.

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<p>What more can you ask for a ship to have?</p>

What more can you ask for a ship to have?

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<p>On Antarctica's coast,&nbsp;there are usually a couple of weeks in mid-winter (around June 21st) when the sun does not rise, and a couple of weeks in summer around Christmas when there is 24-hour sunlight.<span class="redactor-invisible-space" data-verified="redactor" data-redactor-tag="span" data-redactor-class="redactor-invisible-space"></span></p>

On Antarctica's coast, there are usually a couple of weeks in mid-winter (around June 21st) when the sun does not rise, and a couple of weeks in summer around Christmas when there is 24-hour sunlight.

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<p>Arctic Trucks was founded in 1990 in Iceland, with operations in the United Kingdom, Norway, Finland, Poland, Russia and the United Arab Emirates.<span class="redactor-invisible-space" data-verified="redactor" data-redactor-tag="span" data-redactor-class="redactor-invisible-space"></span></p>

Arctic Trucks was founded in 1990 in Iceland, with operations in the United Kingdom, Norway, Finland, Poland, Russia and the United Arab Emirates.

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<p>Arctic Trucks have driven to both poles. They visited the magnetic North Pole with BBC's Top Gear, and have a fleet&nbsp;of four and six wheel-drive vehicles in Antarctica that are also&nbsp;used by scientists.<span class="redactor-invisible-space" data-verified="redactor" data-redactor-tag="span" data-redactor-class="redactor-invisible-space"></span></p>

Arctic Trucks have driven to both poles. They visited the magnetic North Pole with BBC's Top Gear, and have a fleet of four and six wheel-drive vehicles in Antarctica that are also used by scientists.

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<p>When Toyota put the Hilux into production in March, 1968, they had no idea how far they'll go a few generations later.</p>

When Toyota put the Hilux into production in March, 1968, they had no idea how far they'll go a few generations later.

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<p>Without the most reliable GPS systems, it would be easy to get lost, probably forever.</p>

Without the most reliable GPS systems, it would be easy to get lost, probably forever.

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<p>It's a bit like driving across the aftermath of an&nbsp;earthquake.</p>

It's a bit like driving across the aftermath of an earthquake.

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<p>Sunglasses. They are crucial&nbsp;if you want to see near the poles.</p>

Sunglasses. They are crucial if you want to see near the poles.

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