The Royal Geographical Society of Queensland Inc

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Engineering, Geography and Cold Climates

  • 4 Sep 2018
  • 7:30 PM - 9:00 PM
  • The Lavalla Centre, 58 Fernberg Road, Paddington

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RGSQ Lecture Series

Dr Adrian McCallum is about the most adventurous academic/explorer you’ll ever meet.

During twenty years’ service across the Australian Defence Forces he served in numerous diverse roles such as helicopter navigator, meteorologist and civil engineer and he has led or participated in adventurous scientific expeditions around the globe.

These investigations have taken him to many far-flung locations including Svalbard, Greenland, across the Arctic and Antarctica, and to the Himalaya and the ice caps of Patagonia.

In 1992, struggling to retain an interest in his prescriptive flying training, he drafted a letter to Sir Ranulph Fiennes, who had just completed a near death crossing of Antarctica with Dr Michael Stroud, asking him, “How do I become a polar explorer?”. To his credit, Sir Ranulph replied via a hand-written note, “Just do it!” or words to that effect. 21 years later, in 2013, Dr McCallum orchestrated Sir Ranulph Fiennes' ground-breaking 2013 winter Transantarctic expedition.

In 2002 he was awarded the Australian Centenary Medal for his stewardship of the 2001 Australian Army Centenary Everest Expedition and he is a Menzies Scholar and Director of the Menzies Foundation.

Dr McCallum holds a PhD from the Scott Polar Research Institute, University of Cambridge and additional degrees in oceanography, meteorology and civil engineering. He currently serves as a Lecturer in science & engineering, and manages courses in soil mechanics, geotechnical engineering and climate change adaptation. He is fortunate to have led a life of adventure and exploration around the globe and is an expert in remote area science and engineering.

Since his last RGSQ lecture, Dr Adrian McCallum has been keeping busy: in 2017/18, thus far, he’s participated in research expeditions to the Himalaya, New Zealand and Greenland and he’s currently in discussion with representatives from NASA and the ESA about joining a polar ‘dream team’ to sample the last remaining multi-year sea ice in the Arctic in Feb/Mar 2019.

Join Adrian for a brief reprisal of his past adventures, a snapshot of those most recent and an introduction to what might be to come…

The Lavalla Centre, 58 Fernberg Road, Paddington



The Royal Geographical Society of Queensland Inc
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