The 56-year-old was the only woman in a 23-member team who went on an expedition to the Indian research station, Bharati, in Antarctica in November 2016. She successfully completed her mission last December, said the TOI report. Mangala Mani told that Men may have physical strength. But women are emotionally strong. All women should have faith in themselves and should always try to put their best foot forward. Mani said, "The Antarctica mission was really a challenge. Climate there was very harsh. We were very careful while going out of our climate-controlled research station. One had to wear polar clothing. Even 2 or 3 hours out in severe cold was too much and one had to come back immediately for a warm-up."During the icy cold winter months, when the team was stationed at Bharati, she was the sole woman in the entire zone since even the Russian and the Chinese earth stations did not have any women present in the 2016-17 period.
Mangala Mani told 'My team members were very cooperative. Adjustments were made from both sides. Things went smoothly and there were no issues with any member. In fact, my team members celebrated my birthday at the earth station.The selection process was not easy for Mani either. From medical tests to psychological evaluation to temperature acclimatisation to physical endurance test, she had to go through it all.In summers, ships sail to Antarctica to provide food and fuel supply for a year's duration as the world's coldest region remains cut off during winter. We collect all waste and pack them and send them back to the mainland so as to keep environment at the station completely clean.