The Antarctic Snow Cruiser is being constructed as a fundamental research project by the RESEARCH FOUNDATION OF ARMOUR INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY in Chicago. Financing of this project is being accomplished by friends of the Foundation and numerous cooperating industries interested in the scientific exploration of the Antarctic. The Cruiser will be loaned to the Government as the main explorative unit of the coming United States Antarctic Service and will remain in the field for a period of three years, occupying and claiming for the United States vast regions in the Antarctic – the unexplored portion of which is as large as the United States. It is expected that during the first month of operation more territory will be explored than has been covered by the combined efforts of all previous Antarctic expeditions.

Literally a huge traveling scientific laboratory and base, the Snow Cruiser was designed by the staff of the Research Foundation under the direction of Dr. Thomas C. Poulter, scientific director, who was second-in-command and senior scientist of the last Byrd Antarctic Expedition. Complete with living quarters, scientific laboratory, photographic darkroom, galley, machine shop, supply rooms, radio station, and control cabin, the Snow Cruiser is capable of negotiating the most difficult terrain and will even cross over crevasses much as fifteen feet wide. Its wheels, with the largest rubber tires ever built, can be individually raised, lowered, powered and steered. Moored on the top deck of the Snow Cruiser is a five-passenger airplane equipped as a flying laboratory which can be made ready for flight in ten minutes. The unit will accommodate a crew of four comfortably, complete with supplies for one year and fuel for a cruising range of five thousand miles.

Construction of the Snow Cruiser is well advanced in the Chicago plant of the Pullman-Standard Car manufacturing Company. In October it will be driven over the highway through key cities from Chicago to Boston where it will be loaded aboard ship for the trip to the Antarctic continent. Considerable ceremony will attend every move because of the tremendous public interest in this newest mobile unit. It is expected that no less than two million people will see the Snow Cruiser ”in the flesh” before it leaves the United States and many millions more wi1l see it upon its return. Scale-models will shortly be placed on exhibit at both the New York and San Francisco fairs; others are being placed on nationwide tour by certain of the cooperating manufacturers; and department stores, through a national cooperative of organization, will route models throughout the United States as display attractions. Various manufacturers whose products are being used in the Snow Cruiser are beginning advertising campaigns featuring in the construction, and others are laying plans for campaigns scheduled for the near future

In addition to the press, newsreel and radio interest so manifest at the present time, staff specialists of the Research Foundation are being asked by numerous popular, scientific and trade magazines for articles describing the phases of construction and equipment of the Snow Cruiser. Mr. Alexander Schreiber, who has been selected to handle all public relations for the project, is cooperating in every way possible with the sponsoring and cooperating companies in this connection.


This page last updated: 13 August 2000