Public, press invited to visit unique, ski-equipped NSF aircraft at air show May 18th

May 15, 2002

Ski-equipped LC-130 transport aircraft are workhorse planes for the National Science Foundation's Office of Polar Programs. The "Hercs," are the only planes capable of ferrying the tons of cargo needed to rebuild the U.S. research station at the South Pole from NSF's coastal McMurdo Station to Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station. They also fly ice cores thousands of years old down from the Greenland ice cap so they can be analyzed in labs worldwide and ferry thousands of researchers and logistics personnel between New Zealand and Antarctica every year.

As part of the annual Department of Defense Joint Service Open House held at Andrews Air Force Base, MD, on May 18, members of the public will be able to see an LC-130, as flown for NSF by the 109th Airlift Wing of the New York Air National Guard. The Guard is the only unit in the world that flies the ski-equipped Hercules.

In addition to seeing this unusual airplane, members of the public will be able view exhibits about science in the Polar regions. Children will also be able to try on parkas worn by participants in the U.S. Antarctic Program.

NOTE: Due to increased security, access requirements for the media are different this year. For full information, see

What: NSF ski-equipped LC-130 transport aircraft
Joint Service Open House

When: May 18, 2002

Where: Andrews Air Force Base
Clinton, Md.

For more information, contact:
Peter West, (703) 292-8070,
Andrews AFB Joint Information Bureau (JIB), (301) 981-5950 or (301) 981-9131

National Science Foundation

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