Handheld's ultra-rugged Algiz XRW off to the North Pole

The ultra-rugged notebook Algiz XRW by Handheld has been selected by the French scientific North Pole 2012 Expedition as their computing tool of choice for the five week long ski, foot and swimming expedition to the North Pole.

The expedition, led by acclaimed French adventurers and scientists Alan Le Tressoler and Julien Cabon, left France today and is expected to reach the geographical North Pole in two weeks. After their arrival, the team will live in tents at the North Pole for another three weeks fending off polar bears, freezing winds, the sea-ice drift and temperatures that can reach 40C (40F).  The expedition will be autonomous, without assistance, with a daily travel schedule of 25 km, each member pulling a 150 kg sledge. 

The expedition will use the compact Algiz XRW ultra-rugged notebook for its computing and communications requirements during the five-week trip, in conditions testing not only the human endurance but also the quality and durability of the equipment. Connected to a satellite phone, the team will use the Algiz XRW to transmit scientific data and images for international distribution. The Algiz XRW rugged computer will also store all the data collected during the expedition.

"The Algiz XRW is really one of the most important pieces of equipment of the expedition," said project leader Alan Le Tressoler: "The entire objective of the expedition is to collect, retain and analyze scientific data, something we can only do with an extremely well functioning mobile computer that is also able to handle extreme conditions."

"It is also our lifeline in the case of bad weather or injury. We will be in one of the most extreme places on earth, in the middle of a frozen ocean. It is wet, it is cold and we are isolated. We have to be sure that our equipment will be operative and reliable. That is why we choose a rugged computer from Handheld; It is indispensable for the success of our scientific data collection, and for our security."

The objective of the expedition is to collect a range of measurements from a part of the world that has not yet been explored for science. The scientific program entails collection of e.g. weather data, ice-sea drift, and plankton. There will also be a pedagogical program available for school teachers. 

Handheld's Algiz XRW is a fully rugged notebook which is IP65-rated, meaning it is dustproof and highly water resistant. It passes MIL-STD-810G ruggedness testing, including drop tests from 1.2 meters, and can also handle extreme temperatures from -20C to +55C (in use) and -40C to 55C (storage). 

"We are very proud that that our Algiz XRW was chosen as the computing tool for the North Pole scientific expedition," said Handheld Marketing Director Sofia Lfblad. "The Algiz XRW is built for the toughest outdoor conditions but it is also one of the lightest and most compact rugged notebooks on the market, which no doubt is helpful in an expedition like this."

The 10.1-inch touchscreen display features MaxView screen technology which provides spectacular screen clarity and brightness in any outdoor condition, even direct sunlight. And at the North Pole, there will be permanent daylight during the entire expedition. 

The Algiz XRW's mobile capabilities includes Bluetooth, WLAN, GPS and a 3G modem which provides high-speed GSM/UMTS/EVDO data transmission. With Gobi 2000 technology it is possible to work on any choice of wireless frequency anywhere in the world. The 57.7 Wh battery works for 8 hours on a single charge. The compact Algiz XRW is one of the most light-weight rugged notebooks on the market, weighing in at mere 1.5 kilos (3.3 lbs).

Algiz XRW is, like the rest of Handheld's  line-up of rugged PDAs and mobile computers, specifically developed for use in tough environments in industries such as geomatics, logistics, forestry, public transportation, construction, mining,  field service, utilities, maintenance, public safety, military, and security.

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