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Cool architecture: Polar research station, Antarctica, by Hugh Broughton Architects.

Photo: Hugh Broughton Architects.

The British Antarctic Survey officially opened its latest research station today designed by Hugh Broughton Architects. The station is re-locatable, the first of its kind, and is designed to move with the ice shelf, being periodically relocated back inland rather than eventually becoming stranded on an iceberg.

Halley VI, as it is known, has taken some eight years to come to fruition, beginning as the winner of an international competition to find a modular approach to the technically complex challenge.

Each module stands on hydrologically raised skis that maintain the station above snow drifts and of course allow the station to be towed inland.

In this station there are seven interlinking blue modules that provide sleeping accommodation, as well as laboratories, offices and energy plant. There is also a two storey red module at the centre that features a light filled double height social space.

The station is designed to accommodate up to 52 people during the summer months, dropping to just 16 during the long winter.

Photo: British Antarctic Survey.

Photo: Sam Burrell.

Photo: Hugh Broughton Architects.

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