Windsocks are a simple and effective tool to indicate wind direction. They are used in many industries including aviation, water treatment plants, gas and oil platforms and commercial refrigeration sites. When we supply to the aviation industry it is usually to international airports, helipads and airstrips. However, one of our long-standing customers is British Antarctic Survey (BAS) at their polar Rothera Research Station, in the Antarctic. At their research Station which is based at Adelaide Island on the Peninsula they have a dedicated air facility including a runaway.
BAS is the UK’s national Antarctic operation and for 60 years has been responsible for most of the UK’s research in this region. It is part of the Natural Environmental Research Council and has over 400 staff. BAS takes an active role in Antarctic affairs, operating five research stations, two ships and five aircraft in both polar regions. It has joint research projects with over 40 UK universities and more than 120 national and international collaborations. They aim to deliver research that uses the polar regions to advance our understanding of Earth and our impact on it.
The runaway at the Rothera is 900-metre-long and made of crushed rock. Located close to the runaway are its aircraft hangers which house their five aircraft which are specially adapted to fly in the extreme Antarctic environment. Between them they undertake a wide variety of transport and science missions and are equipped with specialist instruments designed to capture geophysical and meteorological data.
Safety is at the heart of all their operations and BAS pilots undergo specific training and always fly with a co-pilot. All aircraft carry fuel reserves and emergency supplies because Antarctic flying is extremely weather dependent. The Antarctic is the driest desert on Earth – drier than the Sahara, and just as big. Antarctica is also the windiest place on Earth.
Windsock Company started to supply BAS with windsocks back in 2015 as an essential visual wind indicator for their pilots landing and taking off at the research centre. Our high-quality windsocks are made from durable material and are ideal for these extreme weather and environmental conditions.
The life of any windsock is determined by the local weather conditions. We always recommend regular checking of windsocks, especially in harsh conditions, to ensure they remain functional. As soon as deterioration is seen the windsock should be replaced. We suggest you keep a spare so the airfield can always remain operational.
Our standard range of windsocks are available from our online shop . To enquire or place an order for delivery outside of the UK and to order bespoke windsocks please email our team