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Geoscientific Instrumentation, Methods and Data Systems An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union

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https://doi.org/10.5194/gi-2017-22
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
16 Mar 2017
Review status
A revision of this discussion paper was accepted for the journal Geoscientific Instrumentation, Methods and Data Systems (GI) and is expected to appear here in due course.
An automatic DI-flux at the Livingston Island Geomagnetic Observatory, Antarctica: requirements and lessons learnt
Santiago Marsal1, Juan José Curto1, Joan Miquel Torta1, Alexandre Gonsette2, Vicent Favà3, Jean Rasson2, Miquel Ibañez1, and Òscar Cid1 1Observatori de l'Ebre, (OE), CSIC – Universitat Ramon Llull, 43520 Roquetes, Spain
2Institute Royal Météorologique (IRM), Centre de Physique du Globe, 5670 Viroinval (Dourbes), Belgium
3Institut de l'Ebre, 43500 Tortosa, Spain
Abstract. The DI-flux, consisting of a fluxgate magnetometer bar coupled with a theodolite, is used for the absolute manual measurement of the magnetic field angles in most ground-based observatories world-wide. Commercial solutions for an automated DI-flux have recently been developed by the Royal Meteorological Institute of Belgium (RMI), and are practically reduced to the AutoDIF and its variant, the GyroDIF. In this article, we analyse the pros and cons of both instruments in terms of its suitability for installation at the partially manned geomagnetic observatory of Livingston Island, Antarctica. We conclude that the GyroDIF, even if less accurate and more power demanding, is more suitable than the AutoDIF for harsh conditions due to its simpler necessary infrastructure. Power constraints in the Spanish Antarctic Station during the unmanned season impose an energy-efficient design of the thermally regulated box housing the instrument, as well as a thorough power management. Our experiences can benefit the geomagnetic community, who often faces similar challenges.

Citation: Marsal, S., Curto, J. J., Torta, J. M., Gonsette, A., Favà, V., Rasson, J., Ibañez, M., and Cid, Ò.: An automatic DI-flux at the Livingston Island Geomagnetic Observatory, Antarctica: requirements and lessons learnt, Geosci. Instrum. Method. Data Syst. Discuss., https://doi.org/10.5194/gi-2017-22, in review, 2017.
Santiago Marsal et al.
Santiago Marsal et al.

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Short summary
Commercial solutions for an automated DI-flux are practically reduced to the AutoDIF and the GyroDIF. We analyse the pros and cons of both in terms of suitability at the Livingston Island geomagnetic observatory, Antarctica. We conclude that the GyroDIF is more suitable for harsh conditions due to its simpler infrastructure. We also show the instrument housing design and its control electronics. Our experiences can benefit the geomagnetic community, who often faces similar challenges.
Commercial solutions for an automated DI-flux are practically reduced to the AutoDIF and the...
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