Scientists Tested Biodegradable Deicers

The problem that the scientists from the Faculty of Agrobiology, Food and Natural Resources had to tackle was the freezing of the deck and the needful parts, which complicated the movement and control of the yacht. “In a very short time, we had to test various proposed mixtures as deicers, however under the condition that they are biodegradable,” says Ing. Vladimír Hönig, Ph.D., from the Department of Chemistry. “The problem is not only the de-icing effects, but Antarctica is generally taken as pristine and pure, and any pollution of the surrounding waters would be inadmissible. Another problem is that the deck is constantly in contact with seawater and the agents applied must adhere to the material long enough. For this purpose it was necessary, of course, to develop the appropriate dosage and application methodology and based on the reporting, the crew is precisely recording the effects and gives us feedback.”

On 12 February 2015 at 20.29 UTC (Coordinated Universal Time) the Selma navigation GPS showed 78 degrees and 43 minutes south latitude. “Our dreams have come true. We’ve got to the Bay of Whales,” the Selma crew announced at that moment.

Contact: Ing. Vladimír Hönig, Ph.D.