Weather Observer in McMurdo Station at PAE

Date Posted: 12/3/2019

Job Snapshot

  • Employee Type:
  • Job Type:
  • Experience:
    Not Specified
  • Date Posted:

Job Description

Supporting the Most Exciting and Meaningful Missions in the World

Weather Observer

GENERAL DUTIES (not all inclusive):

  • Maintains a safe workplace program and ensures that safety is the highest priority in the workplace.
  • Complies with all ASC Environmental, Safety and Health (ESH), Waste Management and Quality Assurance requirements, goals, policies and procedures.
  • Weather observation is primary responsibility.  Intensive weather reporting occurs on days when there are flights.  Observation, recording, and reporting of surface weather conditions begins six hours before aircraft depart McMurdo station.  Hourly observations are reported to MacWeather forecaster.  May require irregular sleep patterns if plane is scheduled to depart early morning or late at night.  On non-flight days, weather is reported three times a day.
  • Observes, records and reports wind direction, wind speed, cloud height, cloud cover, surface visibility, and other weather conditions and phenomena following Federal Meteorological Handbook standards.
  • Sets up and maintains portable weather station and ceilometer.  Operates and maintains backup sensors.
  • Assists with daily reporting.  Communicates with McMurdo via HF radio and Iridium phone.
  • Contributes to end of season report, as required.
  • When in McMurdo, primary duties are to receive trainings and prepare cargo for camp.  Weather delays may be experienced.  When all camp specific tasks are complete, other departments may have tasking, which may be considered menial labor (dish washing, checking equipment, conducting inventories, shoveling, etc.)
  • When not reporting weather (on no-flight days and in between weather observations), works as support labor for general camp and science support activities.  Required to work outside on various jobs in extreme cold weather conditions.
  • Duties may include the following:
  • Cargo Responsibilities:
    • Loading/unloading aircraft.   Communicates with load masters and aircraft personnel.
    • Prepares cargo for movement.  May include packaging, labeling, weighing, and palletizing cargo.  Communicates weights and sizes of cargo with Fixed Wing Supervisor.
    • Assists with waste retrograde and hazardous cargo identification - labeling and handling prior to shipping back to McMurdo Station via fixed wing aircraft.  May separate and dispose of materials.  Tracks and manifests hazardous waste.  Responsible for packaging and documenting hazardous cargo.
    • Prepare and stage equipment and maintains storage berms.
  • Fuels Responsibilities (where no dedicated fuels position exists):
    • Performs fuel tests on aviation fuel.
    • Performs fuel transfers, via pipe, hose and tanks.  May refuel aircraft, buildings and vehicles with hand or electric pump.
    • Performs preventive maintenance tasks as directed.
    • Tracks and reports quantities of fuel delivered to field and amounts given to aircraft.
  • Mechanical Responsibilities:
    • Assists with tracking maintenance and repair needs of all equipment in camp.
    • Assists with operating small mechanical equipment, including chainsaws, drills, welderators, etc. as appropriate.
    • Provides mechanical assistance in the repair of vehicles and other equipment.
    • Operates light equipment vehicles, such as snow mobiles and tracked vehicles.  May groom around camp and runway.
    • Assists in the installation and maintenance of the skiway as needed.
  • Science Support/Customer Service:
    • Assists grantees with support requests and needs, as appropriate.
  • Other Duties:
    • Performs functions with manual equipment such as shovels, picks, and similar implements.
    • Assist with cooking, track food use, plan re-supply, galley tasks and dishwashing as needed.
    • Frequently lifts the safety regulation maximum.
    • Performs other duties as required.


  • High school diploma or equivalent is required.
  • Valid Driver's License is preferred.  
  • Wilderness First Responder Certification preferred.
  • Weather Observer Training preferred.
  • One year of experience in weather observation is required. 
  • An additional three years of combined experience in any of the following:  weather reporting, equipment operation, cargo movement, fuel operations, mechanical equipment proficiency, logistics support, or other related experience is required. 
  • Demonstrated ability to observe, record and report wind direction, wind speed, cloud height, cloud cover, surface visibility, and other weather conditions is required. 
  • Federal Meteorological Handbook experience is preferred. 
  • Demonstrated ability to work in remote and isolated environments is required. 
  • Computer competency is required.
  • Proficiency in MS Office suite is required.
  • Willingness and ability to deploy to Antarctica for extended periods is required.
  • Must be willing and able to lift and move items, parts, assemblies and equipment up to the safety regulation maximum.
  • Must be willing and able to perform physical activities including heavy lifting, climbing in and out of equipment, crawling, and working outdoors.
  • Must successfully complete the physical, dental and psychological (if applicable) examinations as required by the NSF for deploying to Antarctica.
  • Must participate in community programs, such as “house-mouse” (chores), “daisy-picking” (cleaning-up around the station), recycling efforts and safety objectives.
  • US citizenship or US Permanent Resident Status is required.

We are an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.

PAE is a drug free workplace.

PAE is proud to be an Equal Opportunity Employer. Our hiring practices provide equal opportunity for employment without regard to race, religion, color, sex, gender, national origin, age, United States military veteran’s status, ancestry, sexual orientation, marital status, family structure, medical condition including genetic characteristics or information, veteran status, or mental or physical disability so long as the essential functions of the job can be performed with or without reasonable accommodation, or any other protected category under federal, state, or local law.

EEO is the Law Poster