March 1999: 40 workers at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Research Station brace for "winter", when temperatures can reach 100 degrees below zero for eight and a half months. At 70 below zero, no aircraft can take off or land, because jet fuel turns to gelatin. The South Pole is officially closed. Forty-six-year-old Dr. Jerri Nielsen has been at the South Pole for four months running the medical facility, "Biomed", where she has treated no emergencies or serious medical conditions, until her own. Dr. Nelson is diagnosed with cancer. She gets very ill while undergoing chemo, and is airlifted by the Air National Guard. But since jet fuel could turn to gelatin, the operation totals only five minutes with the engine never shutting off.