The Chilean and Argentine Armies Conduct the Land SAR 2011 Joint Exercise in Antarctica
By Dialogo September 30, 2011
The Chilean and Argentine Armies held 11 days of training in the white continent as part of the ‘Land SAR 2011’ joint exercise. Activities such as survival in the Antarctic and travel over glaciers were performed by troops from both countries as part of the training program known as PARACACH, a Spanish acronym for “Argentina-Chile Combined Antarctic Rescue Patrol”.
The participants in the exercise belong to the exploration group at the Argentine Army’s Esperanza Antarctic Base and its counterpart at the Chilean Army’s General Bernardo O’Higgins Antarctic Base.
The exercise encompassed a 173-miles trip in frigid temperatures, approximately -11.2 º F, with winds of up to 99 miles per hour.
The Chilean Soldiers were divided into two groups. The first was made up of three explorers, a radio operations technician, a mechanic, and a nurse, who were combined with Argentine Soldiers. The second group was made up of a rescue patrol of three explorers, ready to intervene in the event of any unforeseen occurrence.
The command post for the exercise was installed at O’Higgins Base, by way of a module using satellite communications and Barrett radios and a tracking module, a prototype in its class, with Canatec beacons.
The German Space Agency collaborated with the exercise, providing satellite images.
Prior to the exercise, a Chilean exploration group set up an emergency logistics post in the Mackenna Pass, around 21 miles south of the Antarctic peninsula, consisting of an easy-to-assemble Weatherhaven-type hut designed for environments with temperatures as low as -58º F and winds of over 93 miles per hour. The post includes radio and satellite communications systems.
These are the things that are nice seeing, brother countries working together for a common purpose, I await the day when my beloved Latin America can be a single country, without greedy interests, without divisions...