Take one of the ideas that Flat Earthers have proposed: an infinite plane of ice, with occasional "world-ponds" dotting it every 30,000 miles or so. These "world-ponds" are rather like other Flat Earths set into the ice and kept warm and friendly by their our small stars. Assume for this setting that there's a field that adversely affects electronics and engines, so aircraft are a bad idea (like going into the Bermuda Triangle, in popular legend: nobody knows the "spooky" reason, electronics and even fairly simple engines [diesel, gasoline, etc.] simply fail).
In this scenario, Stirling engines function, as do hot air balloons, though due to the great distances between strong heat sources, there isn't much of a thermodynamic difference to speak of, hence not much wind between the "world-ponds".
So far, I've considered hovercraft, spell jammers, ships with giant ice skates or skis (sort of like sleighs), sand crawlers, AT-ATs, centipede-looking Antarctic lab things, insect-designs with giant ice-pick/crampon feet, amphibious ATVs, and even woolly mammoth sled teams.
If engines and compasses go to hell out there, and there's not much wind to speak of, then how is one to move around in the first place? Fuel and batteries would presumably run out long before getting to the nearest world-pond, and solar is out of the question in the darkness between the world ponds' suns.
At the moment, I'm leaning most toward a fringe-science form of diamagnetic levitation, with a thorium reactor for power generation (the extremely basic thermodynamics of boiling water aren't affected by this mysterious "Bermuda Triangle field effect", clock- and steam-punk technology are being used to manage the rods, and I'm stuck with hand-waving the radiation issues for the moment) and fuel cells for stored potential energy (as a secondary emergency power supply). Navigation is reduced to sextants (sighting on dimly lit landmarks such as other “world-ponds”, almost like Abbott's “Flatland”, since there are no stars in the sky) and calculating machines. Food (aside from emergency supplies) I'm taking care of with yeast-GMO algae vats.
1) Does this design sound sufficiently functional, or is it terribly broken?
2) If it's broken, then what vital modification(s) is it missing in order to reasonably travel with enforced primitive technology through Antarctic conditions?
3) What obstacles must be dealt with in order to run even a stripped-down reactor via clock- and steam-punk technology?