Attention Early Career Researchers

Attention Early Career Researchers

APECS SAApplications are now open to join the national committee of APECS-SA, the South African National Committee of APECS (Association of Polar Early Career Scientists).

APECS-SA is looking for early career scientists, enthusiasts, naturalists, and good storytellers passionate about Polar Research, to join the team.

As polar researchers, we are responsible for communicating the value of polar research, and APECS-SA needs your help!

If you are not an APECS member yet, join APECS-SA today and apply to be on the National Committee.

Application deadline: 31 October 2022

Apply here!


The current National Committee


Read more about the NC members   

Read more about APECS-SA  

Welcome Home Gough 67

Welcome Home Gough 67


L-R: James Burns, Selvin van Wyk, Karabo Mokwena, Nkosi Madama, Kim Stevens, Peter Chuku, Vonica Perold and Roelf Daling.

The 67th Gough Island Overwintering Team has returned to Cape Town. Two members of this team stayed behind on Gough Island.

Departure to Gough Island: 15 September 2021

Disembarked at East Pier: 20 September 2022

Gough 67



The 67th Gough Island Overwintering Team – Offical Team Photo

This image was taken during midwinter.

Back (L-R): Selvin van Wyk, James Burns, Nkosi Madama, Karabo Mokwena, Kim Stevens, Roelf Daling; (front) Sandile Nkebe, Vonica Perold, Peter Chuku and Tshililo Kharivha.

Links to relevant articles:

Check out all the G67 newsletters produced!


Team photo supplied by: Roelf Daling

Anche Louw, Antarctic Legacy of South Africa, 20 September 2022

Meet the 68th Gough Island Overwintering Team

Meet the 68th Gough Island Overwintering Team

G68 - Gough Island Overwintering Team

G68 Team (Left to Right): Lucy Dorman, Joyfull Ntobeko Gaju (removed from the team and replaced with G67 Medic, Sandile Nkebe), Philani Siyabonga Ngcobo (removed from the team and replaced with G67 Assistant Meteorological Technician, Tshililo Kharivha), Sibusiso Maduna, Rebekah Goodwill, Mphumzi Brooklyn Zilindile, Eddy Mfezeko Xaki, Khuliso Collen Maphaha, Mayembe Kapenda.

On 20 August 2022, the S.A. Agulhas II departed to Gough Island, via Tristan da Cunha. They will soon arrive at their new home, where they will be living for the next approximately 13 months. The G68 team will replace the G67 team.


68th Gough Island Overwintering Team (G68)

We asked the team members why they applied to be part of G68?




Two team members stayed behind from G67. The Medical Orderly, Sandile, will be replaced at a later stage and Tshililo will stay on for the year as part of G68.



Anche Louw, Antarctic Legacy of South Africa, 25 August 2022, updated on 19 September 2022.


Voyage 054 – S.A. Agulhas II to Gough Island/Tristan da Cunha

The S.A. Agulhas II departed from East Pier, V&A Waterfront on her annual Gough Island relief voyage on Saturday, 20 August 2022. 

On the way to Gough Island, the vessel will stop at Tristan da Cunha, offloading Tristan passengers and cargo. This stopover will approximately be 60 hours. From here the vessel will depart to Gough Island. Passengers will disembark and cargo will be offloaded with helicopters. Scientific projects will commence. 

Onboard are the DFFE Logistics team, the 68th Gough Island Overwintering team (9 team members), the National Department of Public Works (NDPW) maintenance team, Helicopter crew, Scientific personnel, and Tristan passengers.


Logistics Team

Department of Forestry Fisheries and the Environment (DFFE)
Directorate: Southern Oceans & Antarctic Support
Management, logistics and support for this voyage
Departmental Co-ordinator (DCO)Ms Nomzi Ndzandzeka
Assistant DCOMr Zukisa Kuse
Technical SectionMr Willem Boshoff
Medical Doctor Dr MC Taggart
Waste TechnicianMr Tatulo Fipaza

68th Gough Island Overwintering Team (Click here for profile pictures of the team members)

Medical Orderly/Team Leader Mr Joyfull Ntobeko Gaju
Diesel MechanicMr Sibusiso Maduna
Communications Engineer/
Deputy Team Leader
Mr Mayembe Kapenda
Electrical/Base EngineerMr Eddy Mfezeko Xaki
Senior Meteorology Technician Mr Philani Siyabonga Ngcobo
Assistant Meteorology Technician Mr Khuliso Collen Maphaha
Assistant Meteorology Technician Mr Mphumzi Brooklyn Zilindile
RSPB Field AssistantDr Lucy Dorman
RSPB Field Assistant Ms Rebekah Goodwill

National Department of Public Works Maintenance Team

Project Manager LeaderMr Takalani Mudau
Refrigeration Mechanical
& Deputy Leader
Mr William E Kriege
CarpenterMr A Petersen
CarpenterMr E Roberts
CarpenterMr ME Gazi
BricklayerMr MI Jantjies
PlumberMr M Maluka
PlumberMr MW Samsodien
PlumberMs N Sogoni
PainterMs B Nelani
Crane TechnicianMr James Page
Crane TechnicianMr L Pierce
MechanicalMr J Zeelie
MechanicalMr MLG Porta Nova
MechanicalMr B Mpengesi
MechanicalMr LN Thomas

Helicopter Crew 

Team Leader & EngineerMr Raymond van der Watt
Captain Mr Waldo Venter
Captain Mr Eugene Viljoen
First OfficerMr Mukapitendwa Khalushi
First OfficerMr Jason Abrey
EngineerMr Daniel Carstens
Engineer Engine/
Mr Warren Vogt
EngineerCrewmanMr Eduan Teich
EngineerCrewmanMr Jodi Brophy
Fire Fighter Mr Zakariah Johnson

Scientific fieldwork planned for the 2022 take-over

South African Weather Service (SAWS)
Atmosphere and Ocean Surface Research
Group LeaderMr. Julian Grace
Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment (DFFE)
Monitor trends and changes in water quality, provide guidance and support
Group LeaderMs Silindokuhle Ndlela
Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB)
Gough Island Restoration Programme
Group LeaderDr Antjie Steinfurth
South African National Space Agency (SANSA)
Polar Space Weather Studies
Group LeaderMr Christopher Gray
University of Fort Hare
Landscape and climate interactions (LCI)
Group LeaderDr Elizabeth Rudolph


Featured Image: Gough Island station (Credit: Julius Klette). 
Anche Louw, Antarctic Legacy of South Africa, 23 August 2022
SCAR Open Science Conference 2022

SCAR Open Science Conference 2022

“SCAR’s mission is to advance Antarctic research, including observations from Antarctica, and to promote scientific knowledge, understanding and education on any aspect of the Antarctic region.  To this end, SCAR is charged with the initiation and international co-ordination of Antarctic and Southern Ocean research beneficial to global society.  One of the most effective ways to do this is to bring researchers together to share their latest results, discuss new ideas, and provide opportunities to develop new projects” –

SCAR expanded its biennial business meetings to include an Open Science Conference (OSC).  This year’s open science conference was held from 1 – 10 August 2022, hosted by India. It made it possible for participants and attendees to discuss current results and develop future projects. The conference included plenary, parallel and satellite events, as well as workshops. Business meetings of the science groups were held before the open science conference.

South Africans participated and attended various sessions during the conference (see details below):

  • Keynote speaker Katye Altieri: “Stable isotopes as a tracer of reactive nitrogen emissions and aerosol formation in the Southern Ocean”.(link)
  • Bettine van Vuuren chaired a mini-symposium. 
  • Christel Hansen, Mia Wege, Geoff Grantham, and Charne Lavery were session convenors.
  • The business meetings were attended by Bettine van Vuuren, Sarah Fawcett, Ria Olivier, Christel Hansen, Anche Louw, Charney Lavery, Geoff Grantham, Thulani Makhalanyane and Werner Nel.

Presentations delivered:

  • Geoff Grantham: The Age And Chemistry Of Granitic Gneisses From The Western H.U.Sverdrupfjella, Maud Terrane, Western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica. (link)
  • Ria Olivier: Digging into the Past; An archive as a tool to compile and establish a timeline of human impact in our polar heritage (link); Collaboration of South African Researchers in an Extreme Cold Environment. (link)
  • Marcel du Plessis: Insights from the SO-CHIC Expedition: what have we done and where are we now? (link)
  • Morgan Raath-Krüger: Do Anisotropic Processes Influence Fine-Scale Spatial GeneticStructure Of A Keystone Sub-Antarctic Plant Species? (link)
  • Charne Lavery: Antarctica, Africa and the Arts (link)
  • Adrienne van Eeden Wharton: On Aftermaths and Afterlives, Afterimages and Aftersounds: Mourning-As-Witnessing Ecological Destruction in the SouthernOcean/S
  • Daniela Monsanto:  Landscape Genetics Of A Springtail Endemic To Marion Island (link)
  • Sophie Kohler: Ice in the Southern Imagination (link)
  • Pedro Lebre: Uncovering The Unexplored: The Microbial Ecology Of Sub-AntarcticIsland Soils (link)


  • Liezel Rudolph: A geospatial database for the sub-Antarctic Prince Edward Islands (link)
  • Geoff Grantham: The Kuunga Accretionary Complex of Sverdrupfjella, western Dronning Maud Land, Antarctica (link)
  • Shilpa Parbhu: Understanding how an invasive springtail adapted to cold sub-Antarctic Marion Island (link)
  • Trevor McIntyre: The ontogeny of southern elephant seal foraging migration strategies: finding their way as they go (link)

Antarctic Legacy of South Africa communicated South Africa’s participation and conference-related announcements on Twitter (47 Tweets). A highlight was the session on the discovery of Shackleton’s Endurance, where South Africa was frequently mentioned during the talk.

What is to come:

  • SCAR Delegates Meeting (5-7 September 2022)
    • All the best to Bettine van Vuuren and Tracy Klarenbeek attending as SA representatives.


All posters and presentations can be found on the ALSA digital archive.

The conference virtual site is still available – if you have missed out on any sessions you can listen to the recordings, and all abstracts and posters can still be downloaded.


Ria Olivier, Antarctic Legacy of South Africa, 17 August 2022.

© South African National Antarctic Programme • Managed and administered by Antarctic Legacy of South Africa • Photo Credits